Storm in a teacup © Gwyneth Chubb
Our club's past
The formation of Dawlish Photographic Society was instigated by Mr Murray J Bader who hosted the first ever meeting at his home on 3rd January 1979. One of the ten persons who attended that meeting is still with the club, Honorary Life Member, Tony Wilson.
When membership grew to 20 later that year, the club moved to Hamilton Hall at the United Reform Church. Within another year membership had increased to 49 and, by the autumn of 1980, the Club, now named Dawlish Camera Club, moved its weekly meeting place to the Manor House, Dawlish where it remained until December 2007.
In April 1982 the club was renamed as Dawlish and Teignmouth Camera Club to reflect the number of members from Teignmouth. The number of members was consistently over 60 in the 1990s, reaching a peak of 68 in the 1992/3 season.
By the time of the Millennium several members were experimenting with digital photography by, initially, scanning film based material in to computers and manipulating it on the screen rather than in the traditional darkroom. As time has gone by, more and more members have acquired digital cameras and the related software. The club has continued to welcome experienced and inexperienced photographers alike, although virtually all members now use digital cameras and software to enhance their images.
The club has gained an excellent reputation for the quality of members’ work and for the friendly nature of the club. The club is affiliated to the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain via Western Counties Photographic Federation and has entered regional and inter regional competitions. During the period 2004-2006 the club won the prestigious Kingswood Salver competition three times in a row being disappointed to come only second in 2007. The club has also entered into friendly local competition within the South Devon Photographic League that involves Newton Abbot, Exmouth and Crediton as well as an Annual Battle with clubs throughout Devon.
In recent years membership has hovered around 40 and when a brand new extension was added to Holcombe Village Hall, half way between Dawlish and Teignmouth, in 2007, the Committee put it to the members that they take the opportunity to meet in modern accessible premises. The first meeting was held at Holcombe on 9th January 2008.
More recently, the club has obtained funding from local Cllrs John Clatworthy and James McMurray and also Dawlish Town Council, to purchase a professional level digital projector, new laptop and software designed for displaying digital images in competitions.
Through its members, the club has participated in several community-based initiatives, such as digitising images for the Teignmouth Museum, recording the history of the Polish Community nr. Trago Mills, photographing the Teignmouth Folk Festival and Teignmouth Players, and a 'behind the scenes' photo opportunity at Exeter City Football Club.
Current activities include an exciting initiative with Hannahs at Seale Hayne, a public exhibition of our work, social events and club outings, on top of a varied programme of events at our weekly meetings.
Historical source: History of Dawlish and Teignmouth Camera Club - Ken Bibbings. 2001