'Valle Crucis Abbey, The West Front', c 1880.
© National Media Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
A photographic view of the west front of Valle Crucis Abbey, near Llangollen, North East Wales, published by Francis Bedford & Co. The Cistercian abbey was founded in 1201 but parts were rebuilt after a fire destroyed them in 1236. Bedford (1816-1894) was a prolific and well-respected photographer, best known for his numerous topographic and architectural views of Britain. In 1862 he accompanied the Prince of Wales, the future Edward VII (1841-1910), as official photographer on a tour of the Middle East. During the 1860s and 1870s Bedford travelled extensively throughout Britain, taking hundreds of views of British scenery. He was asisted by his son, William (1846-1893) whose work is almost indistinguishable from that of his father.