With the nostalgia dial set to max, I shot a series of candid portraits over two days at Blists Hill Victorian Town, a living museum in the heart of England at the birthplace of the industrial revolution.
The Victorian period holds a special place in my heart: so much so that I recently took four years out to restore a Victorian coach house and stables and turned it into our home. But the Victorians have had some bad press recently, as we come to recognise the “glorious days” of the British Empire for the oppression it brought about and the divisions it left behind.
In the face of all this, Blists Hill is a wonderful reminder of all the good that the Victorians achieved. It recreates life in a simpler time when people lived with a strong sense of community and purpose, and it is a reminder that much of the modernity and comforts we take for granted in the developed world were born out of this time.
The actors at Blists Hill Victorian Town work voluntarily to recreate the traditional roles that would have been found at that time.