King’s Lynn Directory: T-V



Although they were the biggest national chain of photographers, the firm of A & G Taylor made little headway in East Anglia. In 1886, however, they conducted a short-lived advertising campaign in Lynn, promoting their pay-by-instalment ‘club’ system, and appointing George Robertson (q.v.) of 14 Windsor Terrace as their agent and collector.

TAYLOR, William

Taylor advertised his business at 13 High Street from March 1854 until March 1857. He contributed photographs to the inaugural exhibition at the Athenaeum and in June 1855 opened (at the same address) one of the town’s first custom-built studios. (Mr Turner (q.v.) had probably been the very first, nine months earlier.) 


In March 1866 the Norfolk Chronicle reported a fire in the ‘Photographic Portrait Gallery of Mr Thompson, – one of the usual buildings on wheels, which has for some weeks past been located in the fore court of a house on the London-road’.


In 1886 James Thompson of Gaywood Road acted, in collaboration with George Robertson (q.v.), as agent and canvasser for T Smith & Sons (q.v.). Both were disowned and replaced within months.

TURNER, Mr (1) 

In September 1854 the Norfolk News referred to Mr Turner’s newly-built daguerreotype studio near the railway station. It’s possible that this was the first purpose-built studio in the town. 

He may have been the Turner of Turner and Walker (q.v), who were in the town earlier in 1854. If so, he had, unusually, switched from the wet-collodion process to the earlier and already obsolescent daguerreotype process during the intervening months.

It also seems possible that he was the William Turner who held the daguerreotype licence for Bristol in the 1840s.

TURNER, Mr (2)

Mentioned in 1898 by James Speight (q.v.) as being employed as a retoucher by Jasper Wright (q.v.). Speight estimated his age at about 35.


Reported by the Cambridge Independent Press in July 1854 as operating ‘the photographic process’ in Lynn at an unspecified location. The paper’s reference to the ‘photographic process’, along with its cheapness, suggests they were using the wet collodion process.

See also separate entries for Turner (1) and Walker.


Leopold Vilenkin, a Russian émigré, arrived in England in about 1905 and worked for a while in a Wolverhampton studio before arriving in Lynn. He had succeeded G. W. Cosser (q.v.) at 60 High Street by May 1915 (as indicated by a Lincolnshire Echo report of 18.5.15). He was still in the town in 1918, when his son was born.

Trade directory evidence:

60 High Street, Lynn



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