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Topical Press Agency Collection

Early 20th Century images captured by one of the leading photo agency of the time

Choose a picture from our collection for your Wall Art and Photo Gifts

Often known simply as Topical, the Agency was founded c.1903 by Mr J.B. Helsby & Mr Walter J. Edward and was one of the leading photo agencies in London in the early twentieth-century. This is an amazing collection of historical black & white art prints taken by Topical photographers who captured images of contemporary events and stock footage that was syndicated to newspapers and publishers around the world.

4,041 Items

We are proud to offer this selection in partnership with Fine Art Storehouse

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Airship R-101

Airship R-101
October 1929: Airship R101 passing over St Pauls Cathedral, London. (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: The bow of Sir Ernest Shackletons exploratory vessel SS Endurance

The bow of Sir Ernest Shackletons exploratory vessel SS Endurance
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JULY 1914: The bow of Sir Ernest Shackletons exploratory vessel SS Endurance being prepared for her Antarctic voyage in Millwall Docks, London, England

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Shire Horse

Shire Horse
23rd February 1926: A Shire Horse groomed for a show at the Royal Agricultural Hall, Islington. (Photo by Kirby/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: HMS Hood at Table Bay in Cape Town with the HMS Repulse behind

HMS Hood at Table Bay in Cape Town with the HMS Repulse behind
The HMS Hood at Table Bay in Cape Town with the HMS Repulse behind, January 1924. The Special Service Squadron are on a tour around the world

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: The Debenhams

The Debenhams
23rd September 1925: The Debenham sisters on their BSA motorcycles. They are wearing fur and waterproof clothing for the winter motorcyclist. (Photo by H. F. Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Dog Trials

Dog Trials
26th October 1928: Competitors wait for their round at the retriever trials finals in Amersham. (Photo by Edward G. Malindine/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Golf Caddies

Golf Caddies
9th April 1929: Mrs Edge and her daughter with their two young caddies during a practice game. (Photo by Edward G. Malindine/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Barrage Balloon

Barrage Balloon
1st August 1918: A barrage balloon tethered at Queens Club, London, in the background the tents used for housing the balloons. (Photo by A. R. Coster/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Prison Van

Prison Van
circa 1924: A side view of a prison van. (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Dunedin

Dunedin
circa 1910: Princess Street in the city of Dunedin, New Zealand. (Photo by S. C. Smith/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Racegoers In Field

Racegoers In Field
Racegoers walking through a field on their way from the railway station to the Royal Enclosure at Ascot

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Exchange Interior

Exchange Interior
The interior of the Baltic Exchange in London, 3rd May 1920. The exchange is the centre of shipbroking and chartering in the City of London. (Photo by A. R)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Missing Mystery

Missing Mystery
6th December 1926: A car being used in a police reconstruction of events surrounding the disappearance of detective story writer Agatha Christie near Newlands Corner, Guildford, Surrey

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Lunch In Rain

Lunch In Rain
27th May 1925: A group of racegoers having lunch in the rain on Derby day at Epsom. (Photo by E. Bacon/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Boat Race

Boat Race
3rd July 1929: Thames Rowing Club beating Courtenay Lodge Rowing Club in the Wyfold cup race on the first day of the Henley regatta in Oxfordshire. (Photo by Edward G)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Anzacs March

Anzacs March
April 1919: Members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, commonly known as Anzacs marching through London. (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Italian Dictator

Italian Dictator
November 1923: Italian dictator Benito Mussolini (1883 - 1945), wearing a national malitia uniform. (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Horse Race Fair

Horse Race Fair
April 1925: A dwarf posing on a funfair ride with a group of people on Newmarket 2, 000 Guinea Race Day. (Photo by W. G. Phillips/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Salmon Fishing

Salmon Fishing
13th August 1925: Mrs MacDonald fishing for salmon on the River Spey. The area is also popular for grouse shooting. Wild salmon are an important part of Scotlands tourist industry

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Lady Mountbatten

Lady Mountbatten
27th January 1927: The worker for the London Division of the British Red Cross Society and Saint Johns Ambulence, Lady Mountbatten (1901 - 1960), with the American, Stephen Sanford

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Battle Scene

Battle Scene
20th September 1927: The remains of an old flour mill on the banks of the Iser at Dixmunde, Belgium, which was the scene of heavy fighting during World War I

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Gold Shipment

Gold Shipment
17th February 1927: Russian sailors watching gold from the Lena Gold Fields being unloaded from thess Trotsky at Hays Wharf. The shipment belongs to Messrs Rothschild

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Isle Of Thanet

Isle Of Thanet
July 1927: Children walking at the waters edge on the beach at Dumpton Gap, Isle of Thanet, carrying their buckets and spades. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Christmas Spirit

Christmas Spirit
December 1925: Children enjoying themselves at a Christmas party at Kentish Town. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Lunch Time

Lunch Time
18th September 1926: The ?100 prize winners from a national essay competition on bananas starting their lunch with bananas. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Thirsty

Thirsty
5th June 1925: An office boy drinking from a hose used for watering the Temple Garden lawn. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: British Tobacco Farm

British Tobacco Farm
September 1926: At a tobacco farm near Fleet, in Hampshire, workers strip tobacco leaves in readiness for grading. Over 80 acres of land are being used for the cultivation of tobacco

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Rustic

Rustic
September 1926: A farm worker relaxes with a pipe and young companions on a tobacco farm at Church Crookham near Fleet. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Winter Sports

Winter Sports
19th December 1927: Two young ladies trying out a toboggan at a London store. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Limited Headroom

Limited Headroom
12th August 1925: A Covent Garden carman crossing a temporary Waterloo Bridge, London. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Dairymans Guild

Dairymans Guild
July 1925: The Dairymans Guild complete with float and bottles. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Sevenoaks Rail Crash

Sevenoaks Rail Crash
August 1927: Workmen dig out the locomotive of the 2-6-4 tank engine which crashed near Sevenoaks on the Southern Railway. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Cooling Down

Cooling Down
June 1925: A group of children paddling in the River Thames in London. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Hopwood Triplets

Hopwood Triplets
29th September 1926: Connie, Henry and Susan Hopwood prepare for next years schooling. The triplets are all five years of age. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Beach Belles

Beach Belles
7th May 1928: Two bathers sitting on the rocks at Broadstairs beach under a parasol. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Low Dive

Low Dive
25th March 1929: A swimmer prepares for a plunge into the sea at Margate, Kent. (Photo by H. F. Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Knee Gaiters

Knee Gaiters
20th February 1928: A couple of ladies showing their knee gaiters on their stockings. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: 1920s Fashion

1920s Fashion
7th April 1925: A woman wearing a 1920s day dress. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Evening Wear

Evening Wear
1st March 1928: Dark gold and platinum evening dress on the right, and a black Crepe de China picture gown with dainty underskirt and ribbons on the left

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Racegoers

Racegoers
April 1926: At a Ludlow Hunt Steeplechase, Miss Hunt and on right resting on a shooting-stick, Miss R Hamilton-Russell. (Photo by W. G. Phillips/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Bank interior

Bank interior
3rd October 1925: Rows of clerks at work making manual entries to the ledgers in the interior of a bank, while a doorman stands by the door. (Photo by Davies/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Young Paddlers

Young Paddlers
5th July 1927: Two young holidaymakers at Viking Bay, Broadstairs, on the Isle of Thanet. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Synthetic Silk

Synthetic Silk
19th April 1926: Fashion models on the catwalk wearing clothes made from artificial silk at the Holland Park Hall in London. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: C Patrick during the ACU 6 Day Reliability Trial from Burton

C Patrick during the ACU 6 Day Reliability Trial from Burton
August 1926: Supporters cheering as C Patrick passes by during the ACU 6 Day Reliability Trial from Burton. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Slimming Aid

Slimming Aid
1928: A woman exercising on a vibrating motor machine. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Police Questioning

Police Questioning
22nd February 1926: Police questioning sandwich-board carriers during a demonstration outside the Houses of Parliament in London at the time of the general strike

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Bank Clerk

Bank Clerk
29th September 1925: A bank clerk paying out to two customers. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)

Background imageTopical Press Agency Collection: Rooftop Creche

Rooftop Creche
8th December 1926: Lady Islington and Lady Grigg open their roof top home and garden for the benefit of children who have no gardens at home. (Photo by Davis/Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)



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Why Choose Us?

We are a leading provider of Art Prints and Photo Gifts since 2003, working in partnership with a range of Sporting Clubs, Charities, Museums and Picture Libraries. A large share of profits from any of their images will go directly towards supporting that charity or club. Our archive of images is carefully curated to bring you a wide range of subjects, including landscapes, wildlife, architecture, and more. We ship from our partner labs in the UK, USA, EU (Netherlands) and Australia.
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Ordering is quick & easy - Just follow 5 Simple Steps:
  1. Find your image: Use our search box or browse our online photo Collections to find the image you want.

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  3. Enter your details: If you're a returning customer, simply enter your email address and password, and we'll fill in your billing and shipping address details. All personal details are held securely and are fully GDPR compliant. As standard, we remove all Personally Identifiable Information after 12 months.

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  5. Sit back and relax: We'll email you confirmation of your order and when it's dispatched. Registered customers can also track orders in the 'My Account' area.

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Is wall art ready to hang?

For quick and easy installation all wall art, including framed prints, canvas prints and metal prints are supplied with a ready to hang solution on the back. Generally, saw tooth hangers are applied as they allow wall art to hang flush against the wall. The serrated edge of the hanger prevents the frame from shifting or tilting when hung.
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Are the photo prints fade resistant?

Yes, we use archival quality photo paper photographic paper for vivid reproduction Prints are an accurate representations of the original artwork, which is preserved for artistic character and authenticity. We guarantee they match previews shown on our web site