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Cabinet Portraits by S. W. Grey and the Studio at 172 Lewes Road, Brighton


[ABOVE] A studio portrait of Mrs Annie Harvey (ne Gandey) and her children, together with her younger sister Kate Louise Gandey (born 1885, Brighton), photographed at S. W. Grey's portrait studio at 172 Lewes Road, Brighton around 1906. Mrs Annie Harvey is seated on the right with a baby on her lap. Standing on the right of the photograph is Kate Alice Harvey (born 1898, Brighton), Mrs Annie Harvey's eldest daughter. On the far left of the picture is Mrs Harvey's eldest son,  Frederick William Harvey (born 1900, Brighton).

Annie Gandey, the daughter of Mary and William Gandey, a Brighton bricklayer, was born at Claremont Place, Brighton in 1879. Annie, who worked as an "ironer" in the laundry business, married Frederick Harvey, a railway fireman or stoker, in 1897. The couple's first child, Kate Alice Harvey was born on 23rd August, 1898, at 56 Cobden Road, Brighton. A son named Frederick William Harvey was born in Brighton during the 4th Quarter of 1900. When the 1901 census was taken on 31st March 1901, Mrs Annie Harvey and her family were living at 64 Washington Street in the Hanover district of Brighton. Frederick Harvey, the head of the household, is described on the census return as a "Stoker - Railway (Worker)", aged 26. Mrs Annie Harvey, Frederick's twenty-one year old wife, gives her occupation as "Laundress (own account)", working at home. Annie Harvey's daughter, Kate Alice Harvey, was two years old at the time of the census, and her son Frederick is entered on the census return as a baby, aged 6 months. Also living at  64 Washington Street, Brighton, was Annie and Kate's widowed father, William Gandey, still working as a bricklayer, and their brother Alfred Gandey, a 14 year old errand boy. In 1903, Annie's father, William Gandey, died at the age of forty-six. Annie's sister  Kate Louise Gandey, the young woman wearing the decorated bodice and the large hat in the above photograph, died in Brighton in 1911, aged twenty-six. Mrs Annie Harvey (ne Gandey), the mother of eight children, died at her home in Lincoln Street, Brighton, in 1920 at the age of forty-two. The cause of death was given as "consumption", the general term for tuberculosis.

Portrait of Kate Alice Harvey (born 1898, Brighton) photographed by S. W. Grey of 172 Lewes Road, Brighton

[ABOVE] A studio portrait of Kate Alice Harvey (born 1898, Brighton), the eldest daughter of Frederick and Annie Harvey, photographed at S. W. Grey's portrait studio at 172 Lewes Road, Brighton around 1904. Frederick Harvey, Kate's father was employed as a railway stoker or fireman. Kate's mother, Mrs Annie Harvey (ne Gandey) worked at home as a laundress.

Kate Alice Harvey was born on 23rd August 1898 at 56 Cobden Road, Brighton, the eldest of eight children born to Frederick and Annie Harvey (ne Gandey). In 1920, Kate Harvey married James McClymont (born 1890, Wigtown, Scotland). As a soldier in the First World War, James McClymont had been awarded the Distinguished Conduct Medal. After her marriage, Kate settled in Hertfordshire. James and Kate McClymont produced seven children during their twenty-six year marriage. Trained as a nurse, Mrs Kate McClymont served in the Red Cross during the Second World War. Mrs Kate McClymont (ne Harvey) died in 1946.

Thanks to Jane Faccini of Parma, Italy, for providing these two portraits from the Harvey Family archive. Jane's great grandmother was Mrs Annie Harvey (ne Gandey). Jane is the grand-daughter of Mrs Kate Alice McClymont (ne Harvey).

Sydney William Grey, Photographer of 172 Lewes Road, Brighton

Sydney William Grey was the youngest son of the veteran photographer Stephen Grey (1822-1891). Sydney Grey was born Sidney William Grey in Brighton in 1873. [Sydney's birth was registered in Brighton under the name of "Sidney William Grey" during the Second Quarter of 1873. In adult life, Sidney preferred to spell his first name as "Sydney"]. Like his three older photographer brothers - Charles Stephen Grey (born 1854), George Elijah Grey (born 1859) and Walter James Grey (born 1865) - as a teenager, Sidney Grey worked as a photographer's assistant in Stephen Grey's studio . When the 1891 census was taken, Sidney was the only son living with his parents at the family home at 32 Caledonian Road, Brighton. Sidney W. Grey is described on the census return as a "Photographer's Assistant", aged 18. By this date, all three of Sidney's brothers had married and, in the case of Charles and George, had established photographic studios under their own names. In 1891, Sidney Grey was probably assisting his father and brother Walter James Grey at the family studio in Caledonian Road.

On 29th April,1891, shortly after the 1891 census was taken, Stephen Grey, Sidney's father, died in hospital following an operation to treat a strangulated hernia. Stephen Grey's studio at 32 Caledonian Road passed into the hands of Stephen Grey's youngest son, Sidney, who was then only eighteen year of age. Sidney may have only remained at No 32 Caledonian Road for a brief time - the studio is not listed in trade directories after 1892. A carte-de-visite dating from around 1892, gives details of "S. W. Grey, Photographer" at an address in Caledonian Road, Brighton. Presumably, Sidney Grey worked as a photographer throughout the 1890s, yet his name does not appear as a studio proprietor until the publication of Kelly's Directory of Sussex in 1899.

In adult life, Sidney preferred to spell his name as "Sydney W. Grey". In Kelly's 1899 edition of the Directory of Sussex, Sydney W. Grey is listed as a photographer at 172 Lewes Road, Brighton. Pike's Brighton Directory of 1900, names the proprietor of the studio at 172 Lewes Road as "S. W. Grey", and it is this form of Sydney's name that appears on the majority of his photographs. When S. W. Grey registered his photographs with the Copyright Office of the Stationers' Company in London, he signed his name as "Sydney Grey" and when he married, Grey gave his full name as "Sydney William Grey".

In 1901, Sydney William Grey married Madeline Sarah Gorringe (born 1879, Brighton), the daughter of Annie and Harry Gorringe (1840-1892), a Brighton bootmaker and shoe shop proprietor. [ The marriage of Sydney and Madolin (Madeline) Grey was registered in Brighton during the 3rd Quarter of 1901 ].

Sydney W. Grey operated the photographic studio at 172 Lewes Road until the end of the First World War. ( S. W. Grey's studio is listed in trade directories issued in 1918).  By 1920, S. W. Greys studio at 172 Lewes Road was in the hands of the London photographer Henry George Brabazon junior (born 1886. Walworth, Southwark).

[ABOVE] A map of North-East Brighton (c1895) showing the location of Sydney William Grey's  photographic portrait studio at 172 Lewes Road, Brighton [marked with a purple dot]. The location of Sydney William Grey's home at 32 Caledonian Road is marked with a red dot.

[ABOVE] The house at No. 32 Caledonian Road, Brighton, the home of  veteran Brighton photographer Stephen Grey and his family, photographed in 2008. Sydney (Sidney) William Grey, Stephen Grey's youngest son, was living with his parents at 32 Caledonian Road in 1891.

[ABOVE] Numbers 171 and 172 Lewes Road, Brighton, photographed in 2008. The blue house on the right is No. 172 Lewes Road, Brighton, the location of the photographic portrait studio operated by Sydney William Grey between 1899 and 1918.

Photographic Portrait Studios in the Late Victorian and Early Edwardian Period

Typical prices for photographic portraits in the period 1895-1905


Cabinet Format

one copy: 4 shillings

8 shillings for six copies

15 shillings per dozen

Carte-de-visite Portraits


6 shillings for six copies

10s 6d per dozen



Cabinet Format

one copy: 2 shillings

5s 6d for six copies

10 shillings per dozen

Carte-de-visite Portraits


 2 shillings for six copies

3s 6d per dozen



Cabinet Format

one copy: 1 shilling

4s for six copies

6s 9d per dozen

Carte-de-visite Portraits


 1s 6d for six copies

2s 9d per dozen


[ABOVE] Illustration showing a  photographic portrait studio in the mid 1890s, taken from Adolphe Miethe's Textbook of Practical Photography, first published in 1896.


Wages & Salaries in 1902

Professional Man

10,400 a year

(200 per week)

Solicitor's Clerk

208 a year

(4 per week)

Skilled Mechanic

182 a year

(3 10s per week)

Urban Worker

78 a year

(30s per week)


26 a year

(10s per week)


To read an account of the life and career of the Brighton photographer Sydney William Grey click on the link below :

Sydney W. Grey - Brighton Photographer

Sydney William Grey was one of several photographers from the Grey Family of Brighton. Stephen Grey, Sydney's father, was a veteran Brighton photographer. Stephen's three elder brothers - Charles Stephen Grey, George Elijah Grey and Walter James Grey all worked as professional photographers.

Click on this link to go to :       Stephen Grey - Brighton Photographer

Click on this link to go to : Charles S. Grey - Brighton Photographer

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