Shirley Baker (1932 – 2014)








Mothers and young children flock round an ice cream van in a back street in Hulme, Manchester.


Young boys play cricket in the street in Manchester 1964.


A young traveller girl stands amid the rubble of a cleared area of dilapidated terraced housing in Manchester 1968.

Dog Show

A Great Dane at the Manchester Dog Show of 1966 mirroring the cross-legged pose of the gentleman in plus fours in the next bay.


Two young girls swing on a rope attached to a lampost outside a corner shop in Hulme, Manchester in the evening light, 1965.


The packed beach at Blackpool at the height of the summer holiday season in 1970.


Children play in the alleys behind their terraced houses in Salford, Manchester 1962.

Shirley Baker was one of the few female documentary photographers snapping away in the North of England, post-war. In Sept 2014 she passed away; discussion and review of her work and her contribution to the archiving of Northern working-class heritage in well overdue. 

“Documentary photographers of the mid-20th century captured the world around them as they saw it, and it is a shame that there were so few women working in this field at the time. Shirley Baker, who has died aged 82, was one of the rare female photographers who chronicled life in the north of England from the 1950s onwards. When Baker studied her trade at Manchester College of Technology, there was only one other woman on the course…..”


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