In 1981 two workmates employed by the then Chapel River Press - of Weyhill Road Andover, namely Bob Cackett and John Rhodes, Signed up for a photographic course at Cricklade Collage. It transpired that in their opinion, the course fell very short of what they expected to put it more to the point, Bob and John thought that the knowledge they already possessed on photography exceeded that being taught them week after week at the college. They decided that a far better outcome could be achieved by setting up of a Camera Club within the works, they approached the factories own club “ The Chapel River Club” for weekly use of the canteen room.
There already existed a Camera Club in Andover namely Andover Photographic Society which met weekly at the Harrow Way School and who incidentally were one of the founder member clubs of the Southern Photographic Federation in 1963.
Bob and John wished to use the better facilities of the New River Club. After much canvassing for members and the setting up of the first committee the name was chosen. It was to be called Split Image after the focusing aid you see when you look through a SLR viewfinder. 1982 saw the first season, and slowly membership grew. Unfortunately, no record was keep of the original committee of 1982 the only ones faithfully remembered were John Rhodes (Chairman), John Randall (Secretary) Bob Cackett (Competition Secretary), and Mike Hansen (Programme Secretary).
As the club became more established and membership increased, the New River Club were approached as to the possible move from the canteen into the larger dance hall. This arrangement took place and the club carried on until it was felt that a larger membership was needed, not only to use the now very large hall to its full advantage, but also to bring in extra revenue.
It was noted that the Andover Photographic Society was rather unsatisfied with their present venue at the Harrow Way School. A meeting of the two clubs was convened and after some lengthy debate it was decided that they would join forces using the New River Club as the weekly venue. As neither club wished to lose any of its originality, the name of the club would be Andover Split Image Photographic Society or A.S.I.P.S. as we became widely known throughout the Southern Federation.
The first year of the newly formed club Andover Split Image Photographic Society was 1987, and the committee at the time consisted of;
|President - Arthur Blake||Chairman - Larry Emmerson||Vice Chairman - Bob Cackett||Secretary - John Randall|
|Treasurer - Brian Pond||Programme Secretary – Mike Hansen||Competition Secretary – John Eccles|
|Committee Members – Alan Couzens, Steve Griffiths, Sammy Little, Eddie May and Dennis Osbourne,|
Both clubs settled together very well and indeed did so for a further two years. In 1989 the fees at the New River Club increased to a point that could well have been the demise of ASIPS, purely for monetary reasons, another venue would have to found, and the club moved to new facilities in the Red Lion at Clanville.
After 19 years based there, sadly the lease expired on the property and from September 8th 2011 A.S.I.P.S. moved to new premises at Thruxton Memorial Hall. After just one season at the new venue, the club was able to return to the Red Lion. However that did not last very long and the following year the club moved to its current venue, the Enham Club, which has all the facilities we require: a large hall, ample parking and plenty of storage space.
Our membership comprising of beginners through to advanced photographers covers a wide range of interests, which makes the competitions and club nights varied and interesting. Visiting lecturers and judges all like our open, friendly, and welcoming approach. The club formally changed its name to the Andover Photographic Club in January 2019. After more than 30 years, John Randall is still on the committee, now as Competition Secretary as well as Secretary. The club has many long standing members, and also welcomes new members every year.
(Text updated in 2019)