Greater Manchester Revision Point Collection
This huge collection of post war street photos of Greater Manchester has maps so you can see where each photo was taken. Galleries and maps are limited to 1000 photos so the collection is divided into areas.
TIP: Not sure which gallery? Visit the Key Map . Note the reference for any square of interest (e.g. SD9001) and type it into SEARCH. Look UNDER any photo for the word From and click on the name next to it. This will take you the mapped gallery you want.
To read more about the photos, scroll down.
Choose an area
SLIDE SHOW of photos from the Greater Manchester Collection
SD810506A, Ordnance Survey Revision Point photograph in Greater Manchester
Ordnance Survey postwar survey of Manchester
After WW2 up-to-date maps were needed and in Manchester the survey started in 1946. A network of centimetre accurate points was required that could be found again when a map was revised. Their position was recorded by these photographs which show a field labourer pointing to the exact spot with an arrow. The surveyors were behind the camera.
These Revision Points were often on streets corners and junctions, recording humble and everyday scenes, making them akin to a historic ‘street view’. It's not unusual to find over 100 photographs for a single kilometre square.
Once technology made the need for these photographs obsolete many were destroyed. However, Manchester Central Library preserved a large collection of 46,000 photographs covering much of Greater Manchester.
Apart from the date (if none they are 1949/1950) the boards record: the national grid reference of the square, two numbers denoting the 100m square, and a letter (usually A or B) as photos were in pairs. The other numbers are a reference for the film.