Miracle find of treasured memories

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A Kimberley couple’s treasured wedding photographs, seemingly mislaid or lost forever since they went missing in the 1990s, have been reprinted after the original negatives from 1954 were miraculously found.

With their Diamond Wedding Anniversary fast approaching, Sam and Barbara Towle’s family were repeatedly asking about the photos, which they wanted to borrow for a surprise celebration.

The couple, who live in Brendon Drive, searched high and low and were at their wits end when they finally gave up hope of finding them.

But the wedding photographger’s son, Roy Plumb, came to the rescue when he discovered them in some dusty old boxes.

Sam said: “We turned our bungalow upside down but the photos never surfaced. As a last resort I made contact with Roy, whose dad Arthur took the pictures sixty-years-ago.

“Fully expecting him to laugh when I asked if he had his dad’s old negatives, I was astounded when he said yes! He had every single one his dad had taken since he took up photography in the 1930s!”

True to his word, Roy – who estimates he has more than 3,000 rolls of film sitting in dusty boxes – duly began the painstaking task of looking at each of the spools of negatives.

“It was a mission impossible situation and I never thought that it would prove fruitful”, said Roy.

“Days went by and I spent hours trawling through dad’s hundreds of jobs. Just when I was about to give up, I recognised some buildings which Sam had described.”

The discovery of Sam and Barbara’s wedding negatives marked the beginning of another challenge - to get them printed in today’s digital world.

Roy called on the help of his Pal, Peter Jordan, who suggested they take them to a firm in Top Valley.

Sam and Barbara said they were ‘overjoyed’.

“It’s a miracle and we were both overjoyed,” said Barbara.

“Roy and Peter have gone to a great deal of trouble and we are extremely grateful.”

The couple are due to celebrate their anniversary on February 6.