Postcards Of The 1960s: The Photos Of John Hinde

The postcards were produced in the 1960s by photographer John Hinde, a key figure in the development of the colour photograph as a postcard. Each photograph is innovative in its use of colour and stage-management. Shot with large format cameras, the production of these photographs was an extraordinary undertaking. Sometimes photographs could take a day and a half to get right. He used vibrant, highly saturated colours to depict a proverbially beautiful image produced to the highest standards.

It wasn’t just postcards of London that he produced. John Hinde was born in Somerset in 1916 and had always been interested in photography. During the 1940s he took photographs for many series of books, including ‘Britain in Pictures’ and ‘Garden in Colour’ and famously he photographed London during the blitz, which were used to illustrate ‘Citizens in war – and after’ published in 1945. After a short stint in Chipperfield’s Circus, and failing to make a success on his own, he started John Hinde Ltd in Ireland in 1956.

During the following 16 years, he and his studio of photographers travelled Great Britain, Ireland, and many European and African countries taking photographs to produce as postcards. When the company was sold in 1972, it was the world’s most successful postcard company with annual sales of over 50 million postcards.

All images are from John Hinde/John Hinde Collection/John Hinde Ltd)

The Bathing Pool at Ramsgate. A popular seaside holiday town in Kent.

Bottons Funfair, Great Yarmouth. A holiday town on the east coast, not far from Beetley.

Dublin Airport, Ireland. (Yes, people bought postcards of airports. Air travel was something exciting then.)

Longleat Safari Park, Wiltshire. Created in the grounds of an ancestral stately home, this became a very popular attraction that still exists today.

Cars racing on a beach in Jersey. The Channel Islands have long been a popular tourist destination for British people.

Achill Island, County Mayo, Ireland.

A caravan park in Pentewan Sands, Cornwall. I spent all my childhood holidays in Cornwall, and the county is still popular with holidaymakers today.

The Royal Festival Hall, South bank, London.

The Post Office Tower, London. This opened in 1965, and once had a revolving restaurant at the top. I took my first wife there for a birthday meal in the 1970s.

The Houses of Parliament at night, London.

A policeman on traffic duty.

Battersea Park Funfair, South London. (Now closed.)

The open-air paddling pool at Battersea park.

48 thoughts on “Postcards Of The 1960s: The Photos Of John Hinde

  1. If we were wondering about the modernity of these pictures, the very civilized distance between the trailers in that park would clue us in… I don’t know about you guys, but in America, anymore, you can practically reach your arm out a window and into someone else’s!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The cars in the caravan park suggest the late 1950s, Ana. The London photos are probably from the mid 1960s. I went to the Funfair in Battersea Park for the first time in 1963, when I was 11. It looked just like that then.
      Best wishes, Pete.


  2. I have collected postcards since I was eight, but haven’t any of these. The swimming pool is no longer there at Ramsgate. I always waned to go to Battersea Funfair and to the top of the post office tower, but when I came back to England they were gone – well not the tower, just closed!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. The first time I flew it was to Jersey and it was also the first time I saw fuchsia bushes which I have loved ever since, I was about thirteen I think.
    I used to send postcards when on holiday, it was mandatory . .

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I used to buy the postcards on the first day, and send them on the second. I wanted them to get home before we did, but that rarely happened. 🙂
      Love to you both, Pete. x


  4. I didn’t know there were such nice beaches in Britain. But I was only ever taken to Bournemouth and Brighton. Postcards was a good business to be in, I would think. I wonder if people still send them. I loved getting cards from around the world with interesting stamps.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Carolyn, you missed wonderful beaches, as good (or better) as any abroard. This is a beach close to us in Norfolk. Only 18 miles away, around 20 minutes in a car.
      (I feel so sad that you missed so much of England.)
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. When I allow myself to think about it, I am sad too. I never belonged here but because of how things worked out I never had a chance to find out if I could live in England. That beach looks wonderful.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I believe the Post Office Tower was regarded as secret for many years, and not shown on any maps, because of its communication facilities? I lived on Jersey in the early ’80s, and raced an Alfa Romeo Junior 1600 on the beach one season. Great fun, and I wish I could have done more racing, but it wasn’t to be 😦 Cheers, Jon.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. The revolving restaurant was all the rage, as was the rounded office building, a very terrible format floor space wise. “They” have fixed the one in Dallas that was not attached to an office building. They auctioned off the on top restaurant in Founders Tower where I grew up. The one in Houston thumped on its tracks but their main meal was after work alcohol. My favorite was the Hemisfair needle in San Antonio that houses, of all things, an excellent sea food restaurant🤣. Great photos. The large format camera stuff is hard to beat.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. We went to Jersey round about 2003. Nice holiday as I remember even though our eldest had just left home and our youngest son was missing his brother. We let Marc bring his guitar with him and that seemed to cheer him up no end.

        Liked by 1 person

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