Windows in Time Hits the Streets of Torbay

Windows in Time Hits the Streets of Torbay - Torquay Museum

By: Barry Chandler
Added: 06 April 2021

Windows in Time: Images on the Street, will finally be complete on Friday 9th April as part of Torquay Museum’s delayed 175th anniversary celebrations.

The exhibition celebrating local heritage where it happened, was conceived back in early 2019 long before the pandemic struck. The idea of an exhibition on the streets now seems to fit perfectly with the current lockdown situation giving local people something different to enjoy as part of their seafront walks.

The images span the time period that the Museum has existed from the 1840s right up until the 1980s and cover many of the Bay’s most important people, events and iconic buildings and businesses. ‘We are probably most excited about placing the Misses Durnford better known as The Alphington Ponies back on the Strand’ said Barry Chandler the Museum’s Collections Manager. ‘They have such a fascinating story and they promenaded on Torquay’s streets at the time the Museum was founded. We have also put them on the exhibition poster which blends the Strand they knew with that of today.’

The trail contains 25 images spread along the seafront from Torquay Station to Beacon Cove then via the Strand up through town to St Mary Magdalene Church. There are also two more images in Paignton at the Railway Station and the Palace Theatre. The trail shows now demolished buildings, fabulous lost interiors and extraordinary events like the Olympic opening ceremony on Torre Abbey Meadows. They are truly windows in time, and their large format will allow people to see the glorious details hidden in these beautiful pictures.  

Windows in Time was made possible with the help of Torbay Council who helped secure many of the sites and was funded with a grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Many other local institutions have also helped by offering spaces for the images, which make use some boarded up windows and doorways. More details can be found on or by scanning the QR code that can be found on any of the images or posters. Within each picture is an object from the Museum’s collections, some are easy to find, others are more well-hidden. Find and name ten objects and bring your list to the Museum when it reopens to claim a prize! You can see these objects in the Secret Museum Exhibition at the Museum from June.