I have had the privilege of studying alongside Huw Bancroft in Bristol over the last few years and I’ve enjoyed seeing his Severn Beach project develop over time. I definitely think he’s a photographer to keep an eye out for in the future. When describing this project he states:
“Severn Beach is a small village on the mouth of the Severn Estuary, just outside Bristol. It has seen dramatic change since the end of the 19th Century, when it was transformed from a rural farming town into a popular riverside resort.
Severn Beach developed into a thriving tourist attraction by the 1930′s due to the extension of the railway line from Temple Meads. The village hosted a large number of shops, cafes and even an open air swimming pool. The area was very popular amongst people in the South West who flocked to ‘The Beach’ on day trips. By the 1960′s, the village became tired and it’s popularity lagged as the improvement of public transport allowed people to go further afield. By the 1970′s, the pool had been demolished to make way for flood defences due to the expanse of housing in the area.
This photo story documents Severn Beach and its surrounding areas in 2012. It now serves as a ‘commuter town’ with modern new housing dominating the area. Only a few traces of the old resort remain. This leaves a striking juxtaposition of the past and the present, raising questions about modern Britain. Most importantly, this collection of photos aims to help the viewer see the subtle and often overlooked magic of this eccentric old village.”
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