In 1901, Edward J Burrow decided to turn his hobby of art and travel into a business, founding the company Ed. J. Burrows & Co. He started by having his illustrations reproduced onto postcards and books and this lasted for only three years before Burrow turned his eye to other things.
In 1904 the company produced a guide to Cheltenham and the first ‘Burrow’s Guide’ was born.
By the 1930s Burrow Guides were available in over 500 different destinations from Worcester to Sicily, most of which were published on behalf of local authorities. Guides like the hardback guide to The City of London were first produced in the 1920s but updated through the next forty years, making them relevant and accurate at all times.
Ed. J. Burrows & Co also developed the Burrow’s Pointer Maps, these were mostly aimed at travellers with limited to no knowledge of the area and were almost as famous and used as the pocket guides. These Pointer Maps covered hundreds of towns and cities throughout the country, including Worcester.
By the time Burrow died in 1935, his guides had reached widespread recognition and his legacy has carried on even to this day, where his company – although changed considerably – still lives on.
This copy of Burrow’s Pointer Guide map of Worcester is in Worcester City Art Gallery and Museum’s collection.
By Bethany Jane Collins.