SLIDESHOW: Where Crawley’s past meets the present

We’ve all seen ‘before and after’ pictures from locations all across town - but these give an impressive new twist to an old concept.

These pictures were taken by Jeff Pitcher and give a fascinating glimpse into how much Crawley has changed over the years.

Crawley History Then Again'Pictures courtesy of Jeff Pitcher

Crawley History Then Again'Pictures courtesy of Jeff Pitcher

The photos - part of a project called Then Again - have appeared in an album on Jeff’s Facebook page and have been well received.

Jeff, 45, was inspired after having three pictures published in a book called Dear Photograph - which used the same principle - and seeing his work appear in the Guardian, Independent and Sunday Mirror.

Crawley born and bred, Jeff said: “I have always been fascinated by the 50s new town history and the way that it is now giving way to a NEW New town.

“It was only two weeks ago when using one of the photos for my Facebook profile and realising the interest, that I had the idea to take the project in a more ‘historical’ way.”

Jeff’s work on the project has attracted some curious glances from passers-by wondering why he was standing in the road with a photo in one hand and a camera in the other.

He said: “People on the street look very confused, but only a handful have asked what I am doing.

“I can spend up to half an hour trying to get one photo right. I feel everyone looking over my shoulder. Maybe this article will help them understand!”

As for the photos themselves, they were a lot more tricky to achieve than simply holding up the old pictures and taking a snapshot.

Jeff said: “It is a very tricky thing to execute well. 

“Horizontal and vertical horizons, plus the backward and forwards motion of both the camera and my hand - that’s at least eight things to go wrong before I even begin to find the right setting.

“Lines of symmetry, roofs, angles, light and chimneys are the real clue.

“Maths, science, geography, history and photography - gives me a headache just thinking about it.

“A friend said that I should just Photoshop it all into place - that would destroy the fun for me.”

He added: “When it all comes together it is quite an emotional moment knowing that 100+ years ago someone was standing on that very spot, looking very odd, trying to do the same thing.”