Introduction by Kate Buchanan, Town Mayor, Meltham Town Council
Meltham Town Council is delighted that Meltham in Focus digital project is now available on the Town Council’s website. The original five volumes of Meltham in Focus were compiled in 1994 by Ken Oldfield, Secretary of Meltham Photography Club and many others, with a foreword written by Robert C. Ashton, Chair of Meltham Town Council at the time. Organisations thanked at the time included Kirklees Museum and Library Service, Huddersfield Examiner and Meltham Town Council so it seems fitting that the latter has taken on the task of creating a digital version of the volumes (now extended to sixteen volumes, plus an Index). Unfortunately, Volume 9 went missing some time ago. The black folders were kept in the Library and then later in the Edward Brook Room in the Carlile Institute.
Dave Pattern, who works at Huddersfield University and who created Huddersfield Exposed, has painstakingly scanned all the materials which included text and photos and used special techniques to improve the quality of the images. Everything is now searchable online. A duplicate hard copy will be available in the Library in Meltham for anyone to browse. If people wish to copy photos or text for their own use, we ask that you acknowledge the source. Each page includes a reference to copyright.
Explore Meltham in Focus:
- Meltham in Focus: Indexes for Volumes
- Meltham in Focus: Volume A
- Meltham in Focus: Volume B
- Meltham in Focus: Volume C
- Meltham in Focus: Volume D
- Meltham in Focus: Volume E
- Meltham in Focus: Volume F
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 1
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 2
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 3
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 4
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 5
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 6
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 7
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 8
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 9 (missing)
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 10
- Meltham in Focus: Volume 11
Further information on the development of the original Meltham in Focus contributed by Christine Westcott:
Whilst Ken Oldfield was the initial instigator and driving force behind the collection, spending many hours in the Kirklees Archive to support his activity, there are other people who should also receive credit for their contribution. After the first volumes, Ken sought assistance in sourcing further photographs and information. An appeal by Meltham Library, Meltham Photographic Society and Meltham and District Civic Society was launched in 1996/97 for people to donate photographs. Photographs were handed into the Library, then in the Carlile Insititute, with the proviso that those donated would remain in Meltham and for the benefit of Meltham as a previous collection had been subsumed into the Kirklees Archive post 1974.
The Librarians, Carole Dyson and Sheila Lally accepted and collated the photographs which then went to Ken and Tony Dawson (Civic Society) who curated the collection. Tony supporting Ken on the cataloguing, indexing and additional local information. A significant proportion of the photographs were donated by John Dyson, who had previously been a member of the David Brown’s Photographic Club. John was also responsible for at least three folders. The collection has been utilised on a number of occasions including History and Heritage Days when they formed a part of exhibitions held in the old Town Hall and when the Library was in the Carlile Institute where Carole and Sheila were happy to discuss with both Locals and Visitors, some from overseas
The folders were placed in Meltham Library to ensure accessibility to any resident of Meltham to view. When the Photographic Society folded, Raymond Austwick having been a key member, the collection passed into the stewardship of the Civic Society. Latterly, there had been discussion between Ken and Tony about digitising the collection so this part of the story has now come full circle. When the Civic Society folded, stewardship of the collection was passed to Meltham Town Council.