South Tyneside to pay tribute to WW2 photographer Amy Flagg with blue plaque on International Women's Day

South Tyneside will pay tribute to local historian and wartime photographer Amy Cecilia Flagg this International Women’s Day, by unveiling a commemorative blue plaque.

Thursday, 3rd March 2022, 12:08 pm

Known for using her Brownie Box camera to record daily life and changes around South Tyneside in the 1930’s, Amy Flagg’s (1893-1965) most notable work came from images she took during the Second World War and in particular, the aftermath of enemy air raids.

The plaque will be placed at Amy’s former family home, Chapel House in Westoe Village and unveiled on International Women’s Day, March 8, by Mayor of South Tyneside, Councillor Pay Hay.

Mayoress Jean Copp, Deputy Leader of South Tyneside Council Joan Atkinson and those who nominated Amy for the plaque will also be in attendance.

Amy Flagg

The Mayor said: “Amy Flagg was a remarkable photographer and historian who pictured and researched the town she loved during times of huge social change.

“But it was the pictures showing the trauma around her and the effect of the air raids on South Shields which marked a defining moment in her life and gained her much respect and recognition. Through her images she captured the human spirit of those tasked with clearing up the damage.

“Amy was also an incredibly generous and selfless person, who donated much of her time volunteering in her local community.”

Fascinated by the changing landscape of South Tyneside, Amy joined the South Shields Photographic Society in 1930 where she would photograph the house clearances along the riverside in order to keep a social record of its development.

Bomb damage captured by Amy Flagg

Amy lost both her mother and father during the war, however her work capturing and documenting bomb damage around South Tyneside gave her renewed strength and purpose.

Amy also went on to become a volunteer at Ingham Infirmary and South Shields Public Library and on her death, in 1965, left a substantial sum of money to the infirmary and gave her extensive collection of photographs and notes to the library.

Councillor Joan Atkinson, Deputy Leader of South Tyneside Council, said: “We are delighted to be able to celebrate Amy Flagg’s life and work with a blue plaque at her former family home. It is particularly fitting that this takes place on International Women’s Day, an important day to recognise and celebrate the incredible achievements of women.”

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Bomb damage captured by Amy Flagg

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