This week the Worcester Life Stories project team is preparing for the opening of a brand new exhibition at Worcester City Museum and Art Gallery, chronicling the history of the changing face of Worcester and its residents through photographs.

From 1950s shop fronts and forgotten landmarks, to communities that were migrated as the city developed, evocative images in the exhibition unlock memories of days gone by.

The images were taken by staff of Worcester City Council, including health inspectors, archaeologists, conservation officers and planners to inform their day to day work, capturing building use, living conditions and heritage.

They tell stories of lost industries, of hardship and poverty followed by regeneration and redevelopment, some of which still divides opinion today.

Other images capture a more domestic view, especially those images taken by Chief Public Health Inspector, Tom Marsden.

As reported previously, it was Marsden’s role to ensure that housing conformed to the 1957 Housing Act which called for houses to be fit for human habitation and led to around 3,500 properties in Worcester being condemned as unsanitary and unsafe.

What followed was the mass demolition of many areas, including the tenement houses of the Blockhouse, Tybridge Street, The Moors and Dolday.

This view of mass slums across the city should also be balanced with a comment from one local resident who rightly pointed out: “While the houses of the Blockhouse are often written off as slums, the people who lived there were decent, hard-working people, and kept their houses fastidiously clean and tidy”.

Visitors to the exhibition will be able to see original items from Worcester’s Social History Collection and take part in an exclusive quiz trail.

It would be fantastic to see everyone there, you’re all invited and we look forward to more memories being shared, inspired by this fantastic collection.

Worcester Life Stories opens on Saturday, June 12 and runs until February 2022.

Worcester Life Stories is a collaborative project bringing local people together through shared stories of the City of Worcester. It is co-led by Dr Natasha Lord, Herefordshire and Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust and Sheena Payne-Lunn, Worcester City Council and funded thanks to National Lottery players. For further information or to share your stories, visit, our Facebook page or Twitter @worlifestories.

You can also email or call 01905 721133.

And why not visit the We grew up in Worcester page on Facebook?