A BUNDLE of photographs dating back 60 years has been discovered behind panelling in a Lake District hotel.

The mystery cache was found by maintenance staff during the recent refurbishment of The Keswick Country House Hotel on Station Road, Keswick.

And now, hotel manager Stephanie Rogers is appealing for help in reuniting the pictures, along with a solitary letter, to their owner, Harry Scott.

Mr Scott’s name is on the envelope, which is dated June 10, 1954, and in brackets is written the word ‘staff’, indicating that he was employed by the hotel.

Stephanie said: “Unfortunately Choice Hotels don’t have records dating back that far, but the fact that the letter and pictures were found behind panelling on a staircase in the basement suggests that he was a maintenance man; nobody else would have been allowed down there.”

The letter was written by a man who signs himself simply as “M”, but the seven small black and white photographs all feature a woman called Leslie.

She alone appears on six of the pictures, which show her in various locations, including behind a bar and in front of a stone fireplace in a wood-panelled room. Both these images date from New Year’s Eve 1953.

Leslie may have been close to Mr Scott as she has written on the back of the photographs, referring to him as ‘Darling’ and signing off as ‘Your Girl’ and ‘always yours’.

Stephanie added: “She could have been his sweetheart. The photographs obviously meant a lot to Mr Scott because they were hidden away, but we can only guess about whether they ended up together. It would be so nice to find out – or at least to return the photographs to their rightful owner.

“I’d love to hear from anyone who recognises Leslie in the pictures. She could be somebody’s mum or grandma.”

The only other clues lie in the 7th picture, which shows Leslie sitting at a table ‘at Sutherland’ on Christmas Day 1953 with a Mr and Mrs Clapp, their housekeeper and gardener, a baby and a young boy.

The letter indicates that ‘M’ knew Mr Scott well enough to write to him and say he was sorry not to have seen him for some time. He also mentions golf and refers to ‘the club’ and ‘the Swan’, possible The Swan Inn, which is in Cockermouth where the writer appears to have lived.


Comment below if you recognise the lady in the photograph.