|24 Station Road, Epsom|
|Current Occupier (2013)||Shapers Ladies Health (Street Level)|
Maple Gardens Residential Flats (20 - 26 above)
|Occupier in 1911||David Knights Whittome (later Knights-Whittome)|
Artist and photographer
|Details of 1911 Proprietor||
David Knights-Whittome was a talented high street photographer who worked in the local area for a period spanning c.1905 until 1917/8. His photographic archive, containing many portraits of local residents, soldiers posted to the Woodcote camp, and some local scenes is held at Sutton Archives and is being digitised and made available online here https://www.flickr.com/photos/pastonglass/
Research and news about the project can be found on the project blog here https://pastonglass.wordpress.com/
Image courtesy of Sutton Archives
David Knights Whittome was born on the 29 of December 1876 in Greenwich, to Joseph Whittome, both a warehouseman and Baptist minister, and Eunice Smith. David was the youngest of seven children, three of which died in infancy. He appears to have started hyphenating his name about 1905, although not consistently at first, and nor do we have evidence to explain this decision.
David moved to Sutton about 1904 and opened a shop in Epsom in 1911. Both Sutton and Epsom shops remained open until around 1918. He was married on 4 June 1907 to Sarah Elizabeth Draper (known as Bessie) in Hertford. He gave his profession as Artist and Photographer and his residence as Sutton. The couple had two sons: Ronald and Maurice.
David Knights-Whittome's Epsom Shop
Image courtesy of Sutton Archives
Knights-Whittome obtained a Royal Warrant of Appointment in 1911 having photographed the Royal Family over a number of years. He subsequently advertised himself as 'Photographer to the King'. He photographed three generations of the British Royal family (Edward VII, George V and the future Edward VIII) in formal portrait shoots, country house parties and as part of a larger 'press pack' at events such as the investiture of the Prince of Wales at Caernarfon Castle in 1911. He also photographed other Royals such as King Alfonso of Spain, King Manuel of Portugal and the Queen of Norway.
Queen Mary; King George V
by David Knights-Whittome, published by Rotary Photographic Co Ltd
bromide postcard print, 1910
NPG x137828 © National Portrait Gallery, London
With the outbreak of war, David was attested as a Special Constable on the 14 August 1914 and served in that capacity locally until the 31 December 1914 after which he joined the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve and then in 1916 transferred to the Royal Garrison Artillery, Special Reserve, as a 2nd Lieutenant.
At some point, which is unclear, he ceased his photographic work (Sutton Archives has plates dated 1917/18). It is clear from correspondence in 1921 with the Royal Warrant Holders Association that he was no longer working as a photographer in Sutton or Epsom.
David and Bessie retired to St Albans where he became involved in local politics and became Mayor 1940-1941. He died on 4 November 1943 and is buried at Sandridge.
Text courtesy of Abby Matthews
Project Officer - The Past on Glass, LB Sutton
For a list of images currently on line please visit our Past On Glass page.
The David Knights-Whittome Glass Plate Collection is held at Sutton Local Studies & Archives Centre, based at Sutton Central Library, St Nicholas Way, Sutton SM1 1EA.
The Past on Glass project is currently looking for volunteers to research some of the people shown in this large collection of images. To volunteer or for other enquiries about the collection please contact the project officer Abby Matthews directly on 020 8770 4746 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
For all other queries relating to the Archives or local history please contact Kath Shawcross, the Borough Archivist and Local Studies Manager on 020 8770 4747 or email: email@example.com.