Around 400 photos have been found and carefully restored by 2 French men who had rescued them from being dumped. They had been lying undisturbed in an attic of an old barn 10 miles behind the Somme battlefields.
An amateur photographer, possibly a local farmer, is believed to have taken the pictures in the winter of 1915-16 and the spring and summer of 1916.
They help form a poignant record of the British Army on the eve of the most bloody battle of the first World War. Some images show the soldiers wearing rough sheepskins, when they had to improvise during the great overcoat shortage of the winter of 1915/16, others show soldiers posing with a little girl by their side. There is one of a soldier who looks to be over 7ft tall and also, significantly, there is a rare photo of a black soldier posing with fellow comrades.