Chris Porsz, a 68-year-old street photographer, through his work, is showing how the people of Peterborough, Cambridgeshire have changed through the years.
Scroll down to have a look at his work to know how time changes people and how the camera captures time.
#1 Dad And Daughters (Original 1994 – Reunion April 2021)
“Dr Richard Scott was photographed with his three daughters in Bridge Street, Peterborough in 1994. He said: “I think it was a Saturday and my wife would have been working in the hospital and I would have taken the girls out in Peterborough.” Richard worked as a GP and also did endoscopy at Peterborough District Hospital in the evenings and at weekends. He retired in 2019, but has since returned to help with Covid vaccinations. His wife, Caroline Scott, worked as a radiographer at PDH and Peterborough City Hospital and has now retired.”
#2 Lesley And Chris Porsz (Original 1971 – Reunion January 2021)
“Chris was a student, aged 18, and Lesley a clerical officer at BT, aged 20, when they were pictured in the Peterborough Evening Telegraph in 1971 after hitchhiking around 6000 miles across Europe and North Africa in just three weeks. They were married in 1976 and have three children and seven grandchildren.”
#3 Mr Gino (Original 1980 – Reunion May 2021)
“Ice cream seller Genesio Borrillo (aka Gino) is pictured in Cromwell Road serving Zahida Parveen. He bought an ice cream van when he moved to Peterborough from Italy and travelled around the city in the summer selling ice creams. In 1992 he set up a pasta shop in Peterborough, which he still runs with his wife Clara and daughter Lucia. He has three children and four grandchildren. Zahida said: “I used to live near Cromwell Road and I’d often buy an ice cream from Gino, I usually had a cone with strawberry drizzle and sometimes a chocolate flake. I think I was about seven in the photo.” Zahida still lives in Peterborough and has three children and a grandson. She added: “It was lovely having my picture taken again.”
Gino and Zahida’s 1980 picture appeared in Reunions 1 but with just Gino outside his pasta shop in 2014 as the girl could not be found. Chris added: “It was wonderful to find Zahida and to be able to reunite her again with Gino in the same location 41 years later.” Thanks to Israr for the ice cream van.”
#4 Carrot And Stick (Original 1981 – Reunion July 2021)
“Bernard, who lives near Stamford in Lincolnshire, has been married to Irene for 58 years and has two daughters, three grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren. He has enjoyed oil painting for the last 30 years. He also collects tins with pictures on them and has amassed a collection of 31,500 over the last 13 years, which he displays in his home.
Chris said: ‘It was one of the most surreal and funniest reunions I have ever done. All thanks to Bernard who was a great sport and up for a laugh and to Vanessa and Jerry Rice at Four Acres of Thorney, near Peterborough who kindly provided 10-year-old Jessica. They have four others donkeys, Dyliss, Molly, Ronnie, and Reggie who kept trying to get the carrots too.’”
#5 Ford Cortina (Original 1980 – Reunion June 2021)
“Paul Smith was photographed standing in front of a Ford Cortina in Cobden Street, Peterborough in 1980. He worked as a porter at Peterborough District Hospital for 12 years from 1978, some of that time with Chris Porsz. He said: “The photo was taken outside my flat and it was my neighbour’s car.” Paul has two children and is a DJ on local radio station, Peterborough Community Radio. Chris struggled to find a similar Cortina as they are very rare but a friend contacted him to say he had spotted a red one on a drive. Chris knocked on the door and owners, Maurice and Joan Bradford, were very happy to provide their Ford Cortina Mk 5 Crusader for the reunion photo. Chris added: ‘I had asked Paul to dress colourfully to bring the old mono picture alive and as you can see he didn’t disappoint!’”
#6 Ever Ready (Original 1980 – Reunion August 2020)
“Brothers Adalat Khan and Amir Baz ran a newsagent in Cobden Street/ Cromwell Road in Peterborough from 1979 to 1996 and were photographed in 1980. They are now retired and still live in Peterborough. Adalat is married with two sons and Amir is married with a son and daughter.
Chris added: ‘As you can see from their faces they loved getting back behind the counter and wanted to remain to serve a few more customers.’”
#7 Red Hot (Original Circa 1981 – Reunion August 2020)
“Tim Davies worked as a blacksmith in a forge at Thorpe Hall (now a Sue Ryder hospice) in Peterborough for five years in the early 1980s. He said: “It was something I always wanted to do, and the opportunity came up so I took it. I learnt on the job and loved it all. It was a delightful and very satisfying skill to learn.” He later went on to work out of Grimsby on the highly hazardous deep sea fishing trawlers around Greenland and beyond for two years.
Tim added: “I returned home for a more settled, safer, and quieter life so became a security guard in the local job center as I am a sociable person and I like meeting and helping people.” Tim, who has a daughter called Gwendoline, retired in 2012 and is a regular at the Wortley Almshouses where he enjoys real ale and the good company of his friends. Tim went to a forge in the village of Thorney for his reunion photo in 2020, where he met blacksmith John Downing. He added: ‘I saw the forge and it started pulling on my heart strings, it brought back lots of lovely memories.’”
#8 Fun At The Fair (Original 1985 – Reunion May 2021)
“Friends Toni Cray (nee Pignatiello) and Teresa Weston (nee McPartlin) were photographed on the Sizzler at the Town Bridge Fair in Peterborough in 1985. Toni said: ‘We had just left Stanground Comprehensive School after taking our CSE/GCE exams and a big gang of us went to the fair on the Friday night to celebrate. I was 15 and Teresa was 16. It was an absolutely brilliant night, and it was really our last night before adulthood. We didn’t have proms in those days so we went to the fair instead. Seeing the photo Chris had taken brought back all my memories from that night. We got there about 5pm and went on loads of rides and I remember some of the lads going in the tunnel which spins.’”
#9 Lollipop Lady (Original Circa 1984 – Reunion September 2020)
“Gloria Steele loved her job as a lollipop lady at Queen’s Drive School in Dogsthorpe Road in Peterborough. She helped the children cross the road three times a day for seven years during the 1980’s. Gloria, who has a son and a daughter, later worked as a carer in the community for the NHS until she retired.
‘It was great fun re-creating the photo in uniform with a new lollipop pole and I had not lost my touch as the cars kept stopping, so it brought back lots of happy memories. We had a good laugh and it was lovely to see the girls all grown up.’”
#10 Four On A Bench (Original 1985 – Reunion September 2020)
“Friends Johnny Crawford, Trudy Larkinson, Sandra Wilson-Bailey and Tom Bray (left to right) were sitting on a bench in Bridge Street, Peterborough, when Chris saw them in 1985.”
#11 Wedding Rings (Original 1981 – Reunion September 2020), Howard And Sharon
“Howard and Sharon Marshall (nee Bird) were spotted by Chris browsing wedding rings at Ernest Jones on Cathedral Square in Peterborough in the Spring of 1981. The couple met on a night out at The White Lion pub in the city in 1976 and got married at St John’s Church in Stanground in November 1981. They had their reception at London Brick’s Phorpres Social Club and a two-week honeymoon in Tenerife.
The pair, who celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary in 2021, bought their first house in Peterborough in 1980, but spent a year renovating it before moving in together after they got married. Sharon worked for SodaStream after leaving school, then in 1984 she became a stay-at-home mum. Howard worked as an engineer for Royal Mail for nearly 40 years until retiring seven years ago.”
#12 Mates (Original 1982 – Reunion April 2021)
“Mates (left to right) Romell Yearwood, Ryan Wiltshire (now Rayan Abdel Raheem) and Stephen Moore are pictured on Cathedral Square in 1982. Mark Allan (wearing cap) moved away and was not available for the reunion picture.”
#13 Frogs, Vikings And Gluttons (Original 1989 – Reunion August 2020)
“Paul Yates was a street cleaner in Peterborough for 20 years until he was medically pensioned in 2006. He was photographed using the “Green Frog” cleaning machine in Lower Bridge Street in 1989. Paul, who is married with three children, returned to the same street for the reunion photo with the city council’s new cleaning machine, “The Glutton.” Paul, who still lives in Peterborough, has been running Viking reenactment group, Clan Wulfhar, for 30 years and gives talks to schools around the country. They also put on encampments with 20 tents and act out big battles around the country.”
#14 Owl And Burger (Original 1984 – Reunion August 2020)
“Joe Wright was often seen around Peterborough with pet Barn Owl Rocky perched on his shoulder and Chris took a photo of him at a country and western show in 1984. He said: “We hand-reared several rescue Barn Owls and I’d take Rocky into town on my shoulder, which made people smile. He was called Rocky because he rocked his head from side to side when he was happy. People would come up and stroke him, he was very tame and never tried to fly away. He used to live in my bedroom and when my alarm went off he would nibble my ear until I got out of bed.” Eventually Rocky and the other owls moved to the garden shed, but one day someone broke into the shed and released them. Joe said: “They thought they were saving the owls, but they were hand-reared so couldn’t live in the wild. It was very sad.” Joe, who still lives in Peterborough and works for Perkins Engines, went to The Exotic Pet Refuge in Deeping St James for the reunion picture and posed with Sparkle the Barn Owl. He added: ‘We’ve got dogs, guinea pigs, and goldfish now. It was lovely to have an owl on my shoulder again and brought back great memories.’”
#15 Pyschobillies (Original June 1983 – Reunion August 2020)
“Four lads (left to right) Greg Brown, Dave Kennedy, Dave Baines and Neil Tucker were photographed in Cathedral Square in Peterborough. They have all stayed in touch over the years.”
#16 Scoop Purchase (Original 1980 – Reunion April 2021)
“Brothers Mark and Matt Court (left to right) were photographed eating chips in a pram while their mum went shoe shopping in Bridge Street in Peterborough. Matt said: “We had no idea the picture had been taken, a friend saw it on Facebook and recognised me. When my mum saw it she loved it and was very emotional. I think I was about 12 months in the photo and Mark was about two-and-a-half. We think mum was shopping for cowboy boots for our dad.” Mark and Matt both went to school with Chris Porsz’s children. They now live in Birmingham, where Matt is a carpenter and Mark, who is married with three boys, is a head teacher of a primary school. Matt is moving back to Peterborough soon.
He added: “It was great to go back and re-create the photo and catch up with family. I’ve got a copy of the picture on my wall now.” The shoe shop is now a Ladbrokes. Thanks to Sally Wells for loaning the pram for the reunion photo and the Salvation Army Superstore in Long Causeway for the props.”
#17 Famous Five (Original 1980 – Reunion May 2021)
“Friends Nasar Ali (left), Ali Shauqat (middle), Mohammed Shanawaz (right), Khalid Mahmood (crouching on left) and Mohammed Riza (crouching on right) are pictured by the Gladstone Street sign where they all lived. They returned for a reunion photo in 2010 but Khalid Mahmood was not available and Mohammed Shanawaz’s twin brother, Muhammed Shazad stood in for him. All the boys returned for the new reunion photo in May 2021.”
#18 Tea Break (Original Circa 1983 – Reunion September 2020)
“Nurses Karen Belson, Maggie Moore, Anita Downs and Jane Kew (left to right) The friends all worked nights so their tea break would often be around 1am.”
#19 Madhouse (Original 1991 – Reunion August 2021)
“Emily Wright (nee Adams) and her brother Jimmy Adams are pictured sitting in the doorway of the Madhouse shop in Bridge Street in Peterborough in 1991. Emily and Jimmy grew up in Werrington Village with their two other siblings and attended The King’s School in Peterborough.”
#20 Boy To Man (Original 1982 – Reunion February 2021)
“Mohammed Mustafa was seen behind the wall of his home, 64 Cromwell Road, in 1982 when he was about four. He now works in Tesco’s warehouse in Peterborough and has five children. His mother still lives in that house.
Chris said: ‘When I took Mohammed’s picture nearly 40 years ago I never thought I would ever see him again, so it was wonderful to see how he now towered above that wall and to be able to stop and chat about those intervening years.’”