The SWiB Archive

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The main photographic collection at SWiB forms part of the Western Morning News collection of original negatives and transparencies taken by various employed press photographers. Deposited in 2006 by Chris Robinson, director of the association, local historian and correspondent for the Herald, the WMN collection accounts for the many news stories and events featured in the local papers covering Devon and Cornwall. SWiB has been working to digitise this collection during a two year Heritage Lottery funded project. See our Project Archive pages for further details.

SWiB Reference WMN
Accession Number 1
Coverage Temporal 1945-2003 (some gaps)
Type Photographic

We have around two million WMN negatives which we are busy scanning and cataloguing in chronological order on to an internal searchable database. The earliest image is dated 1945, with a consistent run from the 1960s onwards through to 2002.

The images SWiB is working to scan in from this collection offer a wonderful complement to the collection of newspaper articles on microfiche at Plymouth Central Library. The counterpart of the collection is currently held at Plymouth And West Devon Record Office.

Please note, only photographs from 1941 onwards survive of the WMN/EH collection. Any original photographic records prior to this were destroyed during the Blitz.


The images within our WMN collection are in the process of being digitised and added to the online SWiB Subject Galleries. These galleries are updated every month.


SWiB holds the largest collection of photographic records in the region. In addition to the Western Morning News Collection, we also have many other substantial photographic collections and additional non-photographic complementary material which have been accessioned and are awaiting future transfer to the catalogue database. These collections have been deposited by local businesses and societies and from members of the public either as permanent deposits or on a loan basis to enable scanning work to take place.

See below for further details about all of our accessions with links to the full descriptive catalogues where completed. Some will also contain links to the collection online galleries (where applicable).


Accessions List - All
Accessions List - pre-war
Accessions List – wartime
Accessions List - post-war
Accessions List - Business/Industry
Accessions List - Societies
Accessions List - Named Photographers
Accessions List - Family Albums
Accessions List – Topical


To view our current Collection Policy visit our acquisition and preservation page.


Other Links:

SWiB Collection Galleries
SWiB Subject Galleries

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