Refugees Welcome Protest in Swindon November 2015

On Saturday 21st November there was a small (around 50) protest, march and rally on behalf of the Refugees Welcome Campaign. There were various groups attending, from Swindon Anarchists to The Green Party. The one thing they all had in common was that they wanted to show solidarity with the refugees and that more should be allowed into the country.

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The Face of Remembrance Day in Swindon 2015

Today was Remembrance Day in Swindon. I was there as usual and true to (my) form I have recorded some of the faces of Remembrance in Swindon. They are all locals and that includes Robert Buckland Conservative MP for Swindon South and Solicitor General for England and Wales. Along with Justin Tomlinson, Conservative MP for Swindon North and Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Disabled People.

I had a number of interesting discussions some of which centred around the fact that quite a few of the RBL standard bearers are getting older and wont be able to carry them for much longer there are not many younger people joining and willing to carry the standard at all of these type of events. Despite there being a very large contingent of Army, Army Reservists, Cadets from all three branches of the services not many of them are joining the RBL.

After saying that I am sure this event will continue for many years to come.

Swindon Gay Pride Parade August 2015

Well, first thing to say is that I have failed to keep up with my at least one blog post per week this year. I have really just been either so busy or I have just lost my enthusiasm for it. Either way I am going to try to make up for it and post loads of images from what I have been doing.

Last sat was Swindon Gay Pride 2015. I had fun photographing the parade but to be honest my heart wasn’t in it when it came to the music and just hanging around. I think I left about 4.30 and probably missed quite a bit but I firmly believe that photography is an art form and your heart has to be in it as well as your head.

More catch up posts to come.

The Face of Remembrance in Swindon

Nothing to say on this really other than that the Remembrance Parade, Service, Ceremony here in Swindon is still as strong as ever after a large turn out of both those who took part in the parade and the public who came to support. The weather was perfect, a bright sunny November day.

Three Demo’s and a Bike Ride A Grand Day Out for a Photojournalist in London

It was a busy afternoon in London on Sunday.

Whitehall was a very busy place. Firstly I covered the service and laying of wreaths at the war memorial by riders from the Help For Heroes Charity bike ride from Paris to London.

Then I covered the protest by UK based Turkish and Kurdish protestors who were there to show solidarity with all the protesters out in Turkey who are protesting against the ruling AKP party.

Then I covered a protest by some UK based Venezuelans who were protesting against alleged rigged elections by the ruling government party.

Then I covered a Free Palestine protest mainly by Orthodox Jews and members of the Neturei Karda who were also protesting against Zionism and the mass rally that was taking place in Trafalgar Square to celebrate 65 years of the State of Israel.

It was a hot, busy and tiring but really good day for a photojournalist.

Bristol Save the NHS and Anti Austerity Protest March

Today I spent a few hours in Bristol at the Save The NHS and Anti Austerity Measures protest march and rally. There were a good few hundred protestors from various groups including The Radical Bloc, Save The NHS, many of the Trades Unions and other supporters. It was quite a loud march but peaceful and good natured and included The Radical Bloc Group stopping outside of Primark to protest and show their solidarity with the Bangladesh workers who ae suffering quite a lot at the moment, well probably all the time to be honest!!

This is just a small selection of all of my images which if anybody is interested more can be found at http://www.DEMOTIX.com or
please feel free to contact me directly.

Workers Memorial Day Service at Bristol Cathedral

Yesterday 28th April was Workers Memorial Day, where people who have either died or been injured in work related accidents or circumstances are remembered. The South West commemorated the day by holding a service at Bristol Cathedral followed by the laying of wreaths at the Workers Memorial. This was quite an important service as it was the first time that the service/meeting has been held inside a Cathedral and Bristol were rightly proud to allow this to happen. There were also some important speakers at the service. Amongst those who spoke were Michelle Stanistreet the General Secretary of the National Union of Journalists and Dave Smith the head of the Blacklist Support Group, both very important and high profile figures. Dave Smith is heading up the fight against the illegal practice of Blacklisting. And if you are not sure what is going on there, then I suggest it is worth checking it out. It is something that could affect us all and is very quickly becoming a major major issue. Other speakers included Cannon Tim Higgins, Nigel Cotley of South West TUC, Julia Verne of the Public Service Health Observatory, Farzana Saker from Bristol Multi Faith Forum, Sam Maher from Labour behind the Label and Sally Challoner from BBC Points West.
So in my language it was all about being able to go to work in a safe environment and not one where you go to work in the morning and end the day in a body bag or in hospital. Isnt that a worthy cause???

Swindon St Georges Day Parade Celebrations.

It was a lovely sunny morning when the St Georges Day Parade took place. It started at the Ceneotaph and along with well over 100 school children travelled down to Wharf Green where several activities had been arranged and sponsored by inSwindon.
The children sang all the way and from what I could see they really were enjoying themselves both during the parade and the activities in Wharf Green.
The only thing I think is that St Georges Day should be a bank holiday. There should be more celebrations of being English.

Swindon, how it marks the Funeral of Margaret Thatcher a piece of history.

So, this is how Swindon marks a historic event. I for one am very disappointed in the fact that there was nowhere in the Town Centre to watch the funeral of Margaret Thatcher. Now this is absolutely nothing to do with any political leanings I may or may not hold, it is about an event in history and as you can see by these two photos taken shortly after ten o’ clock this morning. Which is when the funeral was taking place in London.
The Big Screen was not showing the news as it usually does and only had an advert on it for an art event that was not due to start till 11.30 so in my mind they could have shown the funeral on the big screen. Now those of you who follow my twitter will have noticed that I did question inSwindon about it and there only response (both on Twitter and by phone) was oh it wasnt planned to show it!!!!!
I also took the time to talk to several people in Wharf Green and they like me would like to have watched the funeral on the Big Screen and were as equally disappointed as I am.

As someone who likes and supports Swindon I just feel a little let down by the town on this occasion.

What do other people think?????

Sunday Project – No More

Well no photo of Sunday anymore. Why? I have been carrying out quite a bit of research and despite it being only the 4th Sunday of the year I have decided to bin it because it is not providing any benefit to me or anybody else. Stats are showing very few hits on those posts and to be honest I can understand why. There is no theme and is therefore completely random and unless I am on another assignment then I am just taking an image just for the sake of it with very little thought behind it. With very little information around the photo, why it was taken etc then why would anybody actually be interested in reading it.

What I should be doing more of is explaining things and why I do them, how I do them etc.

So as a start, I did a small photo shoot this morning. It was only mug shots for the person to send off as part of his profile as part of a competition. It was carried out in a gym, (in the squash court to be precise) where lighting is just awful. And short of getting the flash and umbrellas out it was a case of the ISO at 3200 and hope for the best. I just did not feel happy with the results which prob will suffice for what it was for but I just did not feel satisfied. Which at the end of the day is what it is all about for me. I have to feel emotionally involved in what I am doing and I didnt. Is that true of all professional photographers? I dont want to just earn money and not feel as though I have not done a good job.

So this blog is going to go back to the Swindon News/Photojournalism and I am not going to try to combine other things with it.

Likewise I am going to re-design my website to provide a better experience, better show case for my better images from both the UK and Spain and try to make it more interesting.