Free new online picture archive Memory Lane allows us to ‘celebrate, share and remember what unites us’

A free new online picture archive that anyone can use has been launched today.

From the owners of The Mirror and, Liverpool Echo and Birmingham Live, Memory Lane is a new tool that allows people to celebrate historical snapshots in time by sharing and viewing old photos online.

It comes just as England goes into lockdown and as Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland face tough Covid restrictions, with many people having more time on their hands.

Those behind it say Memory Lane provides a home for historical content that has remained hidden for years.

It is an interactive image and nostalgia archive, with content that is searchable by location, date, topics, people, categories and more.

It’s described as a destination for sharing, discussing, selling and viewing pictures of places and people from times gone by.

Images are uploaded from users, newspaper archives, communities, schools, museums, councils, local businesses and more.

It aims to create a bigger, more inclusive picture of history by allowing you to preserve, discover, share the past.

And Memory Lane uses the latest technology to automatically colourise black and white photos.

The launch of Memory Lane follows a YouGov survey carried out for Memory Lane suggesting that the past is in danger of being lost because 80% of Brits haven’t digitised all of their photos.

According to the newly commissioned nostalgia survey for Memory Lane, 76% of people keep their old photos stored away, with only 23% of people having them out on display.

The survey of 2,058 people also found that 67% of the population are looking for something that brings them comfort in these strange times.

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And it seems a lot of us have become nostalgic because 55% of those surveyed said they are thinking about what we did before the pandemic.

Memory Lane is now asking the public to preserve, discover, celebrate and share images which matter to them as we enter another challenging time during the pandemic.

Fronting the launch is Professor of History, author and broadcaster Kate Williams.

Professor Kate Williams, passionate about the preservation of memories said, “Photographs are one of the most important social documents we have access to, allowing us to understand society and communities from different generations.

“We learn so much more about our past when we look at the photographs of everyday people as opposed to formal photos of royalty and aristocracy.

“If important images languish in the loft, there is a real danger they may be lost forever.”