Grab ’em while you can

Sometimes you hear the radio or television but you don’t actually listen. It isn’t until you pick up on a certain word that it makes you stop and think. Well that’s what happened yesterday; I was busy on the PC with the radio playing in the background when the news came on and stated that a crane had fallen in to the canal just down the road. I didn’t think too much of it as the weather and lighting wasnt exactly to my ideal (yes, i have started getting picky this year despite it been a one-off) and I perhaps thought that it wasnt something that was worth a dash out. That was until I saw a photo from a friend and realised that this was no mini-digger or crane but a 90 tonne monster that had toppled over on the side of the canal towpath. The minute I saw the image I recognised the location. The weather was stunning this morning, blue skies and clear but cold. I grabbed my DSLR, a lens and headed for the canal.

FEB0005What greeted me when I arrived was not exactly what I had expected. The crane had actually rolled over on to its back and was partially submerged in the water. Looking at the size of the vehicle and assuming that the crane unit is resting on the bottom of the canal makes you think what a logistical problem they will have getting it out. I started chatting to one of the “flo-jacketed” workmen; he was a bit cagey but said that nothing would be done until Monday now. Something tells me that a ninety tonne crane can’t be moved by another 90 tonne crane, so in the words of Roy Schneider or Chief Brody as he was known, we’re gonna need a bigger boat ! Or crane in this case. Looking at the location in the other images you will see that this all happened on a canal tow path. There isn’t enough room to do a three-point turn in a Mini Cooper on there so someone is going to have to move things about a little before it can be moved. In matter of fact it looked like they had already started moving things as a temporary road surface had been constructed across one of the fields up to the location. It was difficult to work out if this had been in place before the accident or if it had been constructed since.

I asked the workman if he fancied posing for a funny photo. My big idea was to have him standing in-front of the crane with his back to me scratching his head. Making the image look like it had just happened and a scene from a sitcom but he wasnt willing to partake in my ideas. I firmly believe that my camera and lens set up may have put him off. His slow reaction and the look in his eyes told its own story. You could almost see his mind working overtime and imagining the news headlines tomorrow…. “Workman states crane incident was a crime”. After a brief pause he said “No, I can’t do that…my bosses will have me”. In my opinion he was quite right; these days no one can say anything without it been misconstrued by the media. The last thing I needed was to be chased by angry bosses stating that I  used one of their employees without permission.

Asking permission is a strange thing really. I mean, ask your self the question “What do I need permission to take and what can I take quite freely?” In an age where privacy is a huge issue this is a question that many a photography pro or amateur will have asked himself or even herself. Well here is an answer, in a fashion anyway… In general under the law of the United Kingdom one cannot prevent photography of private property from a public place, and in general the right to take photographs on private land upon which permission has been obtained is similarly unrestricted. However landowners are permitted to impose any conditions they wish upon entry to a property, such as forbidding or restricting photography. Two public locations in the UK, Trafalgar Square  and Parliament Square have a specific provision against photography for commercial purposes without the written permission of the Mayor or the Squares’ Management Team and paying a fee, and permission is needed to photograph or film for commercial purposes in the Royal Parks … This goes on and on but should you wish to read the full monty then you can find it on Wikipedia here

For some bizarre reason the images have had massive attention on my Flickr pages. In fact its been a long time since I have had over 6000 images views in 24 hours. I’m not sure why, as there are images all over the www of the incident. I just wish I had a £1.00 for every view, but may be that is wishful thinking. If you wish to see the full set, then click here . On a final note….sometimes it really does pay to be in the right place at the right time. I have a few instances of this in my experience and I suppose it deserves a post of its own, so one for a later date. Thanks for reading, look forward to your comments.


About Mark Winterbourne

A little about me … well, what can I say. I started photography back in 1979 when I was just 11 years old. I was given a 35mm SLR Camera by my late Grandfather as a birthday present. The camera was a Russian built Zenit EM and built like a house brick. Many of my slides on here are taken with the very same camera. My passion stemmed from my Grandfathers love of photography and in particular his fondness of the English Lake District. I will showcase his work on here in the coming months, but there are over 10,000 slides and I have quite a task ahead of me scanning them in. In the late eighties and early nineties I moved on to autofocus SLR’s and began to accumulate quite a stash of equipment. In between my full time employment and sleeping I started doing small photographic assignments for freinds, family and small businesses. In the early 2000′s I started using a digital camera and traed all my traditional film cameras in for more equipment. My Camera Equipment Canon EOS 20D Body BGE2N Battery Grip Canon EOS 50D Body BGE2N Battery Grip Canon 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 EF-S Lens Canon EF 75-300mm f/4.0-5.6 III Lens Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 L IS USM Sigma 28-105 F2.8-4 DG Lens Sigma 50-500mm f/4.5-6.3 DG OS HSM Canon 580EX Speedlite Flashgun Canon CP-E4 Compact Battery Pack for 580EX I took an avid interest in aviation photography at the start of the 2000′s when digital cameras became more accessible. My enjoyment was taken up a level when I discovered I could mix my love of light & colour with aviation photography by taking photographs. In 1983 I suffered a head injury which was diagnosed as a brain tumour. LIfe soon returned to normal in 1984 but in the early part of 2002 things turned nasty and headaches and sickness returned. To date I dont have a surgeon willing to operate on me and struggle by day to day. You will find more about this in my blogs……. Nothing will stop my photography, not even this head injury….this blog reflects my day to day life as a person with an interest in photography….with a headache to match Hope you enjoy….please feel free to contact me, anytime

Posted on February 3, 2013, in Photography (General) and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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