Teachers, children reel from full horrors of war

Even three years ago when I was last at the Key-School in outer Kyiv there was still a continual fear of an enemy at the gate. Life was relatively safe but the threat remained of further Russian aggression against Ukraine. Now all-out war has ...

Weekly Fortepan – Summer camps the Hungarian way

World Scout jamborees in Gödöllő in the 1930s

Chief Scouts, royal princesses and governors followed in each other’s heels in the Royal Palace Parks of Gödöllő in the 1930s: Hungary hosted two large-scale world Scout jamborees in that period, one of them took place in the summer of the fateful year of ...

Weekly Fortepan – Great discoveries from letters sent in

‘Those are my grandparents!’

From time to time, the editors at Fortepan are moved by the letters from readers who took the effort to write down the story behind a particular Fortepan photo or by messages from people writing to tell that they have recognised a family member, ...

Refugees welcomed in Polish sanctuary but worries remain

At first, as Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine began on February 24, Natalia Orekhova and her mother held on as best they could in under-attack Kharkiv. Life was dangerous but it was still possible to go to the shops. Then the bombs and bullets ...

Cutting it short in the soap factory

The factory is gone, but the payroll accountants are still beaming and the women’s football team is posing for us from these pictures. These were the times when the arrows of the soapery workers made the dollar-tailed imperialist beast screech in pain – socialist ...

Not your average expat

Not just another brick in the wall

As a disaffected 15-year-old punk growing up outside Durham in northern England, complete with his trademark green Mohican hair, Neil Wolstenholme could never have envisaged living in an Eastern European country. “I had no intention of coming to Hungary,” he says, “but I did ...

Weekly Fortepan articles number five

1960s Budapest by Poland’s most famous woman photographer

It wasn’t until her mid-forties that she began taking pictures as a self-taught photographer, yet Zofia Rydet became one of the best-known Polish photographers ever. Due to a love affair, she visited Hungary several times in the 1960s and 1970s. Her images vividly captured ...

Ex-Australian PM Tony Abbott denounces Putin in Budapest

Russia, China ‘both want to do their worst against weak West’

Russian President Vladimir Putin is pursuing a remorseless campaign including all-out war to become overlord of Eastern Europe, colonising Ukraine, the Baltic States, Poland and other former Soviet satellites, Tony Abbott, Australian Prime Minister from 2013-15, told a geopolitical forum hosted by the Danube ...

‘Western goods in socialist Hungary’ – Weekly Fortepan articles

The Market of Inaccessible Goods

Let’s drop in the Budapest International Fair (BNV), browse and taste everything we can; after all, all the specialty products of the Western market debut there. Later, we should have some American refreshments in the bar after filling up our cars with Italian super-petrol ...