Don Tonge’s stunning photographs of Bolton in the 1970s capture the large town in the days when life seemed a lot simpler for many.
The images of children playing out in the street, swinging from rope swings in front of derelict buildings. Things that children don’t do these days, many of these activities fallen by way of health and safety regulations. Don would capture these images of everyday life as he wondered the streets of his hometown. For what seemed like the the everyday and mundane has now materialised into something quite special.
Don “I worked as a freelance photographer for many years shooting Press PR and Portraits. I spent about eight years as front of house photographer for The Octagon Theatre in my hometown of Bolton, Lancashire (or Greater Manchester if you prefer) I have always been interested in Documentary and Street Photography”.
Don’s archive features the daily life of people in his home town of Bolton. Here at British Culture Archive we believe that Don’s work is up there with the best British documentary photography of the 20th century. Powerful images, some humorous, they all tell a story of life in a northern town.
As well as Don’s Bolton archive, other bodies of his work include his self-published Seaside series documenting British resorts since the 1970s, and Good day at the races (1980) which was shot in a day at Haydock Races.
Don’s work has been exhibited in numerous local exhibitions and is now featured as part of The British Culture Archive.
All images © Don Tonge, all rights reserved.