The Picture Postcard World of Nigel Walmsley

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Timeshift, Series 11 Episode 5 of 12

Duration: 1 hour

The surprising story behind the humble picture postcard, playfully told by comic creation Nigel Walmsley. With their own language and bespoke rules, postcards were the texts and emails of their era, at a time when households received up to four postal deliveries a day. Postcards became a holiday staple, but they were once an important means of communicating events - from election results to rail crashes. Entering the world of collectable cards, it's easy to understand the value of a card posted from the Titanic. It's harder to see why anyone would want to collect cards of holiday camps or motorway service stations, but they do. Some consider postcards an art form, others are fascinated by the messages on the back, poignantly stranded in time. Nigel Walmsley is mostly amused.

Music Played

3 items
  • Cheltenham Farmers

    Cheltenham Farmers

    The portrait postcard enjoyed a huge boom in the first decades of the 20th century. This one shows some Cheltenham farmers enjoying a break.

  • Jarrow Shopping Centre

    Jarrow Shopping Centre

    An example of a very 'boring' postcard from the 1960s.

  • Train Collision at East Croydon 1909

    Train Collision at East Croydon 1909

    An example of how postcards reacted to the news. This card was photographed on the morning of the train crash, printed the same day and then bought and sent in the evening.

Credits

Voice of Nigel Walmsley
Christopher Douglas
Voice of Nigel Walmsley
Christopher Douglas
Producer
Gerry Dawson
Producer
Gerry Dawson
Director
Gerry Dawson
Director
Gerry Dawson
Series Producer
Ben Southwell
Series Producer
Ben Southwell

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