Hardman’s Liverpool: Then & Now

Hardmans’ Liverpool: Then and Now was a Heritage Lottery Funded Project. Our Heritage partner organisation was The National Trust. lead by a Youth Steering Committee of six young people who represent a larger group.

The project focused on the photographic work and life of E Chambre-Hardman, his wife and business partner Margaret Mills, the staff who worked at their photographic studio and their customers during the 1950’s in Liverpool. With particular focus on how Liverpool, as depicted in Harman’s landscape photographs, has dramatically altered in the ensuing sixty years since his seminal photograph – “Birth of The Ark Royal”.

Over one hundred young people from across the city first learned about Hardman’s work then participate in photography workshops lead by industry professionals and Youth Steering Committee mentors culminating in the production of recreations of Hardman’s Liverpool landscapes as they look today. The “Now” photographs were exhibited with their corresponding “Then” photograph in FACT gallery Liverpool. This exhibition not only showed images of our cities heritage but recorded how our environment has changed during the last sixty years.

The second part of our project focuses on Hardman’s life. Thirty young people worked with a professional writer/director to research, write, rehearse and perform short plays depicting the lives of: Hardman and his wife, their staff and their customers during the “Quiet Decade”. Performances, enlightening the public to Hardman’s contribution to Liverpool’s heritage took place at “Hardman’s House” and youth and community centers – reaching a combined audience of approximately 650 people.

Audience members  were also invited to participate in a workshop, lead by members of the Youth Steering Committee, using digital technology to repair their old photographs.