Thomas J. Barratt was known in the late nineteenth century as both a maverick and a visionary. Under his leadership, Pears Soap became a household name, and his innovative promotional methods led to him being called 'the father of modern advertising'. However, less well-known is his passion for local history and conservation. The author of a three volume History of Hampstead, Barratt was keen to document the story of his beloved North London home. To complement his written history, Barratt took a series of beautiful photographs of Hampstead Heath and the surrounding area. Unpublished until now, these photographs reveal much about the past life of this historic open space and its importance to London residents through the ages. Join Michael Hammerson in exploring the rich past and present of one of London's most famous open spaces.
Michael Hammerson was born in Highgate and has lived there for most of his life. As an archaeologist, he worked for a Museum of London team focusing on Greater London. He is vice-president of the Highgate Society, one of the country's leading civic amenity societies, and has acted as chairman of its planning group for twenty-five years. He is a committee member of the London Forum of Amenity and Civic Societies. Having studied local history during all that time, he has contributed to several publications on the subject, with a particular interest in the destruction of rural Middlesex, and is currently working on a variety of local and wider historical projects. He also gives guided historical walks around Highgate Wood and Hampstead Heath for the City of London.