Then and Now

Over the past couple of weeks some extraordinary images of Colchester have been appearing on social media. Combining both old and new photographs of the town local photographer Xav Marseille has been creating a collection of stunning images,  each of which is an incredible fusion of the town as it was decades ago, and as it is now in the 21st century. He aptly has named this collection Then and Now.

If you would like to see more of these amazing photographs, along with Xav’s other work, pay a visit to his website and follow him on Twitter @XavMars.

In Xav’s own words:

As a Parisian who arrived in Colchester over two decades ago, this town has become part of the fabric of my life. I studied Art and Graphics in France, but photography has always been my real passion and in more recent years I have experimented with a range of editing techniques that has culminated in the production of a series of interesting artwork – some of which prompted a recent exhibition at the Mercury theatre which ran for over 8 weeks.

A recent discovery of some old photographs of Colchester inspired my latest project – which explores how Colchester has changed over the years. It’s been interesting to consider how the landscape of the town has changed and, using various editing techniques coupled with my own modern photographs, fuse the two images together. The results have been both striking and insightful. Part of the project has allowed me to go on a journey delving back into the past, where as a photographer, you suddenly realise that you are standing in the same spot as the photographer 40, 60 or even 80 years ago. The equipment and technology may have moved on, and the landscape may have changed but the desire to capture the essence of the town from that perfect angle remains the same. The project has gathered momentum with the help from locals who have submitted old photographs and suggested ways to incorporate the artwork (postcards, calendars, publishing a book) and generally encouraged me to produce more of the “Then and Now” fusions.

I would like to see the project develop into an exhibition at a local venue where people can perhaps experience the journey that I have taken during the artistic process and step back into the past with the images whist still enjoying what they capture about modern society.






Xav Marseille


East Hill

Castle Park

North Hill

River Colne

Sheregate Steps

St Johns Street