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Digital Gallery Images

The Gallery includes images of the borough's streets and buildings and portraits of people and communities. The Digital Gallery images are displayed as thumbnails. Full size images can be viewed by clicking on a thumbnail.

How do I obtain a copy of an image?

Photographic copies can be obtained from Tower Hamlets Local Studies and Archives (there is a charge for this service) or a maximum of 5 digital copies can be emailed to you. If you would like to use the images for publication or display please contact us at


Alpha Road 1930s

Image Number:





Island History Trust Image Collection


Bob Farman says: Several of us kids were just throwing a tennis ball around. A small car pulled up close by, in Alpha Road. The driver requested our permission to take a photograph of us playing. He identified himself as a reporter working for a London evening paper (Star/Evening News or Standard, I forget which). The reporter must have been a cricket enthusiast. Producing a small case and chalking a wicket on it (as in photo) I think the cricket bat was a small home-made bat that we were playing with before his arrival. After directing us to our places and postures, he took his photograph, thanked us all and gave us a sixpence, which was soon transformed into sweets all round. I think the encounter must have been in the morning because his parting words were “you will see the picture in tonight’s paper” and he was as good as his word.” Margaret Woodhouse added: The girl batting the ball is my sister Doris Donovan, the girl standing on the kerb is my eldest sister Hilda, the girl at the back with a baby in her arms is my sister Winnie holding my sister Beryl, and the little girl by her side is me, Margaret Donovan. We lived at No.10 Alpha Road and the picture was taken almost outside our house, which was on the corner of Byng Street One of the people who lived in this road was Jane Nooney who had a family of 13 or 14 girls. Her husband was a porter. She was still working at the age of ninety as a cleaner. From Joe Wright