All images from the Northcliffe Collection are limited to 300 prints only. Each certificate issued will also display your unique edition number.

St. Paul’s In The Blitz by Herbert Mason

The Blitz: World War II: Britain: Air Raids: Fire of London. A symbol of survival.

St Paul’s Cathedral rises above the smoke and flames of one of the worst nights of bombing experienced in Britain.

On 29th December 1940 when the Thames was a low water mark and after the early bombing run had severed the water mains, the Luftwaffe’s aircraft dropped more than 10,000 incendiary bombs on the City. By some miracle the landmark church and its dome remained untouched as thousands of fire fighters and troops fought to prevent the ancient heart of London being destroyed by an inferno.

The picture was taken by Daily Mail photographer Herbert Mason – it became one of the most famous images of the war. When German bombers were making one of their heaviest raids, Mason climbed to the roof of the newspaper’s headquarters Northcliffe House. With incendiaries falling round him, he watched building after building around St Paul’s ablaze. Then he caught a glimpse of the Cathedral in a momentary gap in the smoke and recorded his historic picture.

  • Print Only

    From £95

    • £

    Framed / Mounted

    From £192

    • £

    This is Classique, at its longest edge the print will be 35.5 cm long with an overall length of 51cm framed.

    It is printed on Fuji Lustre photographic paper and will have a white mount surround with solid wood frame.

    • 160 £

    This is Forté, at its longest edge the print will be 60cm long with an overall length of 77cm framed.

    It is printed on Fuji Lustre photographic paper and will have a white mount surround with solid wood frame.

    • 310 £

    This is Alu-Forté, at its longest edge the print will be 60cm and floats on the surface of your wall.

    It is printed directly onto aluminium with a super glossy finish and comes with mountings.

    • 310 £

    This is Alu-Grandé, at its longest edge the print will be 90cm and floats above the surface of your wall.

    It is printed directly onto aluminium with a super glossy finish and comes with mountings.

    • 425 £
    51cm X 41.5cm
    51cm X 41.5cm
    51cm X 41.5cm
    51cm X 41.5cm
    77cm longest edge
    77cm longest edge
    77cm longest edge
    77cm longest edge

    At Fleet Street's Finest we sell C-Type prints and Alumini ChromaLuxe. Digital C-Type photographic prints use similar exposure techniques to 'dark room' analogue developing techniques but without the need for a negative.

    Equally the enlarging, focusing and exposure to the paper is managed by a computer using lasers or LEDs rather than a bulb. The following process is still very much the same with the paper being processed in chemical developer, followed by a bleech fix before a wash to remove the processing chemicals.

    A C-Type print very much has its origins in traditional photographic processes but is originated from a digital file rather than a negative. Though, obviously, some of our vintage images are from scans of negatives.

    • 79.166 £

    At Fleet Street's Finest we sell C-Type prints and Alumini ChromaLuxe. Digital C-Type photographic prints use similar exposure techniques to 'dark room' analogue developing techniques but without the need for a negative.

    Equally the enlarging, focusing and exposure to the paper is managed by a computer using lasers or LEDs rather than a bulb. The following process is still very much the same with the paper being processed in chemical developer, followed by a bleech fix before a wash to remove the processing chemicals.

    A C-Type print very much has its origins in traditional photographic processes but is originated from a digital file rather than a negative. Though, obviously, some of our vintage images are from scans of negatives.

    • 95.833 £

    At Fleet Street's Finest we sell C-Type prints and Alumini ChromaLuxe. Digital C-Type photographic prints use similar exposure techniques to 'dark room' analogue developing techniques but without the need for a negative.

    Equally the enlarging, focusing and exposure to the paper is managed by a computer using lasers or LEDs rather than a bulb. The following process is still very much the same with the paper being processed in chemical developer, followed by a bleech fix before a wash to remove the processing chemicals.

    A C-Type print very much has its origins in traditional photographic processes but is originated from a digital file rather than a negative. Though, obviously, some of our vintage images are from scans of negatives.

    • 108.333 £

    At Fleet Street's Finest we sell C-Type prints and Alumini ChromaLuxe. Digital C-Type photographic prints use similar exposure techniques to 'dark room' analogue developing techniques but without the need for a negative.

    Equally the enlarging, focusing and exposure to the paper is managed by a computer using lasers or LEDs rather than a bulb. The following process is still very much the same with the paper being processed in chemical developer, followed by a bleech fix before a wash to remove the processing chemicals.

    A C-Type print very much has its origins in traditional photographic processes but is originated from a digital file rather than a negative. Though, obviously, some of our vintage images are from scans of negatives.

    • 137.5 £

    (Rest of the World £40)


    (Rest of the World £15)

About Herbert Mason

Herbert Mason 1903-1964

Born in 1903 in Great Yarmouth Herbert Mason was the son of Walter Mason, who ran a photography businesses on the seafront and worked for the Yarmouth Mercury.

He joined the Daily Mail in the 1930s as a news photographer covering all types of stories.

On the night of 29 December 1940, Daily Mail photographer Herbert Mason was on fire watch on the roof of Northcliffe House in Fleet Street. He captured what became the defining image of the Blitz – St. Paul’s emerging defiantly from the smoke of surrounding burning buildings. The image appeared in the Daily Mail two days later under the headline ‘St. Paul’s Stands Unharmed in the Midst of the Burning City’. Ironically, only four weeks later, the photograph was reproduced by the Berliner Illustre Zeitung who used it not to show the resilience of the blitzed city, but to show that London was burning to the ground.

After the Blitz he became an official photographer in the Royal Navy sailing to Murmansk with Russian Convoys as well as Malta and Sicily.

He returned to the Mail after the war and became one of their chief photographers covering everything from the wedding of Angela Lansbury in 1949, to the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, and the conflict in Suez in 1956 as well as sporting events, fashion and the trial of Derek Bentley.

Mason worked for the Daily Mail right up to his death in 1964.

About Herbert Mason

Herbert Mason 1903-1964

Born in 1903 in Great Yarmouth Herbert Mason was the son of Walter Mason, who ran a photography businesses on the seafront and worked for the Yarmouth Mercury.

He joined the Daily Mail in the 1930s as a news photographer covering all types of stories.

On the night of 29 December 1940, Daily Mail photographer Herbert Mason was on fire watch on the roof of Northcliffe House in Fleet Street. He captured what became the defining image of the Blitz – St. Paul’s emerging defiantly from the smoke of surrounding burning buildings. The image appeared in the Daily Mail two days later under the headline ‘St. Paul’s Stands Unharmed in the Midst of the Burning City’. Ironically, only four weeks later, the photograph was reproduced by the Berliner Illustre Zeitung who used it not to show the resilience of the blitzed city, but to show that London was burning to the ground.

After the Blitz he became an official photographer in the Royal Navy sailing to Murmansk with Russian Convoys as well as Malta and Sicily.

He returned to the Mail after the war and became one of their chief photographers covering everything from the wedding of Angela Lansbury in 1949, to the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, and the conflict in Suez in 1956 as well as sporting events, fashion and the trial of Derek Bentley.

Mason worked for the Daily Mail right up to his death in 1964.