Images of Historic Hampshire – thanks to the British Library

Engraving depicting two hunters and their dog with a pair of deer standing in the background
Stony Cross New Forest

I’ve just discovered* that the British Library has uploaded over a million images to Flickr Commons.

Yes, that’s right – more than a million – completely free to use as there’s no known copyright. The British Library plans to launch a crowd-sourcing app in 2014, which will enable members of the public to help describe what the images portray. Ben O’Steen wrote a detailed post about it on the British Library blog here.

Hampshire’s Yesteryear

I’ve only had time for a quick look so far, but have already found a bunch which depict scenes from Hampshire’s past, some of which I’ve included here.

Drawing showing people and animals in the foreground with a large manor house in the background
Hursley Park


Drawing depicting two hunters and their dog in the foreground, with a pair of deer in the background
Stony Cross in the New Forest


Drawing of a street scene including people and animals
West Street in Fareham


Detailed drawing depicting sheep and a dog in the foreground, with horse, cart and people in the background and a river meandering in to the distance
Test Valley (or ‘Valley of the Test’ as it’s called here)

I don’t know about you, but I find it fascinating to see what familiar places looked like hundreds of years ago. I’m going to look out for the British Library app and intend to do my bit to help.

* Postscript

I first became aware of this thanks to Matt Buck who runs Matt Buck Hack Cartoons Diary. Matt is the genius cartoonist behind tobiasgrubbe or, as he describes himself:

One of the many excellent cartoons by Matt Buck which wouldn’t look at all out of place in the British Library’s collection.

ENGRAVER to TOBIAS Grubbe – the C18th Gentl. of Word and Picture. I help him to publish his weekly OPINIONS on behalf of his PATRONS.


Image Credits

  • Hursley Park, Stony Cross, West Street in Fareham and  Valley of the Test all thanks to the British Library 
  • @tobiasgrubbe by Matt Buck

By Mark Braggins

Walking, usually with my two ex-racing greyhounds. Interested in lots of stuff. Work: Business Development and Research at Drawnalism


  1. I am working for a museum partnership consisting of Hampshire County Council Arts and Museums service, Southampton Arts and Heritage service and Winchester City Council Arts and Museums service and have recently started to put images of items from the museums collections online both on Flickr – – and on Pinterest The images include photos of objects and also archive photos. At the moment the archive photos concentrate on the period of the First World War due to the current interest in this period. We plan to add more images over the coming year.

  2. Hi Linda, thanks for leaving a comment and sharing the links to the work you are doing with the museum partnership – great work! It looks like you are sharing the images with a Creative Commons with attribution licence, which is excellent. Can I just check if that will be the case for all images you share? If you’re sharing everything with an open licence, then that’d be a great topic for a blog post or two on the Hampshire Hub:

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