Posts Tagged ‘Disney’

A 1960s photo album

April 23, 2013

I have commented before on this blog about the friendship my family had with German families – Germans who had been British prisoners of war during World War II.

One such family – totally German albeit with a French sounding surname were called Gerard. Herman, the father had been a prisoner but had, eventually, been allowed home. He married Geppa and they had quite a large family. They lived in Bremen.  Herman had a job with the United States Line – a shipping company operating transatlantic liners. I suspect he could get cheap travel. Certainly he and Geppa could get over to England and stay with us, presumably leaving the children with the grandmother who, I think, lived with the family.

This album was sent to my parents by Herman and Geppa Gerard after one holiday – I think in 1961 or 62. It is a glorious bit of 60s styling – and my parents would absolutely never have bought a thing like it. Here are the front and back covers.

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No doubt this would be deemed collectable these days. I have no particular affection for Walt Disney cartoons, but I do see a great deal of charm in this little album.

Let’s look at just one photo, taken by Herman.

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I daresay Herman wanted a photo of an iconic red London bus. Sadly his exposure time was a tad long and a moving bus is a bit blurred

Now I’m a nerd, of course, so when I looked at it I said, ‘wow! It’s an RTW!’

Before the Routemaster came in, the Regent Three (or RT) was the standard London bus. They were seven feet six inches wide. The RTW was a widened version of the bus and was eight feet wide. They paved the way for the similar sized Routemaster, proving that London could cope with the wider bus.

In the foreground, looking at the scene, we have my dad and Geppa. I think the visible car is a Fiat 500 and I can just make out a Ford Thames Trader lorry above my Dad’s head.

Now I’m not a London expert, but it looks to me as though the bus is hiding The Cenotaph on Whitehall. I also think the tower in the background is The Victoria Tower – part of the Palace of Westminster.

But hey! London and a slightly ‘rare’ bus have to play second fiddle to that album cover in this case.

Update – April 28th 2013

A friend sent a now picture from the same location. Thanks Pete.

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