Judge not. It's symbolic. On many levels.
For starters, if forks were made like that as a matter of course, we'd all be taking the piss out of the f.wit who bent his/her forks into the stupid shape ours are now.
But surely forks aren't made like that as a matter of course because it isn't the best way to build forks. I expect that in the early days of cycling all manner of fork designs were tried until the best solution became apparent.
Looking again at the Manchester pic I was wrong about the centre of the wheel being behind the axis, there is probably about 20mm or so of rake so it probably doesn't ride as bad as it looks but is probably very twitchy.
I still wouldn't ride it though as to me it definitely looks like something a clown would ride.
I used to have a Freddie Grubb that had a fork rake of 3-3/4 inches. I think forks like that were generally referred to as Banana forks. I was told that with a very long rake it was very easy to ride with no hands for very long distances (if you should ever want to!).
Oh and the trendy people in the hip shoes were nothing to do with me! The photo was taken near the old URBIS building and it is an area full of EMO/Goth/punk types. Not that any of those would be wearing the shoes in the pic, probably a stray student just moved to uni there, lol.
1936 Hobbs of Barbican, 1954 Viking "Ian Steel" model, 1984ish Raleigh Royal, 1991 Orange Prestige.