Everyday time-travel on Chiswick High Road...

These pictures of Chiswick High Road in 1982 and 2003 were sent to How to be a Retronaut by Ian Wylie. Over to Ian:

“Fay Sweet dragged me out along Chiswick High Road in 1982 when I just wanted to go to the pub. She took the original photos, insisting that the shop fronts would not be around forever. I returned to the same spots 21 years later in 2003 and even in that short time the difference is striking. I am planning to go out again soon to take 2010 versions.”

For me, these pictures are an excellent illustration of the unreal nature of “the past”. Nobody has ever lived in “the past”, everybody lives in “now”. The everyday shop fronts which inhabit the “now” of 2010, that this morning did not seem worth a first let alone a second glance, will, in a few short years, seem as exotic and unreachable as any Higgs-Boson particle.

Thank you to Ian Wylie and Fay Sweet.

The man riding the bicycle in picture 6 of the gallery is George White aka Chicken George. George originally lived in Chiswick with his wife and children. He stabbed his wife, and she and the children left the house. When he was unable to pay his rent, George built a pile of his furniture in the garden, at which point he was evicted by the council and began life on the streets - in particular, at the Chiswick Roundabout under the M4 flyover.

Thank you to Terence Dackombe and Claire Morgan.

1 comment to Everyday time-travel on Chiswick High Road…

  • von

    love these…so sad to see the high streets of britain become so homogenised…I much preferred the old look.but then I am a full on retronaut!

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