England’s Motoring Heritage from the Air

John Minnis

This ought to come with a magnifying glass.
If you’ve any interest in maps, history or old photos, you’re going to find yourself poring over its pages, spotting tiny fascinating details of times long gone.
Drawn from the Aerofilms archive, founded in 1919, it shows motoring-related aerial photos from the 1920s to the 1970s, covering anything from tiny thatched wayside filling stations to car factories, accompanied by well-researched text on what you’re looking at and whether it still exists.
This is far more than mere vintage photos: it’s almost a social document, showing how new roads opened up and then clogged the countryside and illustrating fashions such as the roadhouse craze of the interwar years.
Wherever you live you are bound to recognise places you visit, and the contrast is stark, particularly with the empty, dusty roads of the 1920s.

From the air even 1960s modernist developments have a clean boldness about them, which you don’t see when you pull up at Leicester Forest Services today…

It’s a fascinating new slant on motoring and also covers racing circuits. Even in 1971, Silverstone was populated by a mere handful of buildings. GC

Published by English Heritage, ISBN 978-1-84802-087-0, £35