Friday, August 31, 2012

Sepia Saturday 141 : Time Gentlemen Please

The archive picture prompt for Sepia Saturday 141 features a clock. Clocks constantly remind us that time itself is a precious commodity.


I am a little pushed for time this week and for Sepia Saturday I am featuring a number of photographs I took some time (indeed many years) ago and only recently discovered the time to scan. The first picture was taken some thirty years ago and features part of the exterior wall of the Saloon Bar at the Black Friar pub in London.


Around the same time, I took this picture in Elland, West Yorkshire. The smoke and the old cars and the general feeling of abandonment make it a type of visual time-capsule.


This time we are moving a few miles south to Sheffield and maybe a few years forward in time. But it is still the Thatcher years and the same feeling of abandonment.


It was around this time - the early 1980s - that I fell in love with Grimsby Fish Docks. Whenever I got any spare time I would drive over to Grimsby and walk around the lines of smoking houses and fish warehouses trying to capture the smell of dead fish on monochrome emulsion.

And so to the reason why my Sepia Saturday post is somewhat hurried this time around. This weekend I am being taken away on a belated birthday treat, to go on a tour of some of the ancient inns and taverns of the City of London. Hopefully that will include the Saloon Bar of the Black Friar and hopefully I will sit there, replete with fine beer and good company, until the Landlord declares "Time, Gentlemen Please".


Make sure that you get time to visit the Sepia Saturday Blog and see what the other participants are up to this weekend.

33 comments:

  1. Hello Alan:
    Most evocative images which really do recall the 'lost' Britain of the Thatcher years.

    Have a very enjoyable, belated birthday celebration!

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  2. Grand Photos Alan.By the way is it this Black Friars ?In The City? (you know I worked in Carter Lane Youth Hostel in The City in 1971?)

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  3. The 2nd photo truly captures the mood of abandonment. In keeping with the theme, have a grand TIME on your birthday tour.

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  4. I love the chimneys on the smoked fish place! It looks like a jesters' convention. Either that or there's a serious party going on on that rooftop!

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  5. Such desolate pictures and yet so beautiful!
    And we'll all be with you in the Saloon Bar, if not in the flesh but certainly in the spirit :)

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  6. You are really an accomplished photographer from the past to the present. These are such great black and whites. I sit and look at photo books at the bookstore and your eye for interesting is so good. It is fun for us to see the release of the old ones.

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  7. Yes Alan when is the book cominhg out? Lovely to see the old red telephone box - even if in black and white - too!

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  8. Not much for fish, but love the chimney caps!!
    Enjoy your Bday and I raise my glass [right now} to you!!
    Yes, yes, I do, I swear!!
    :)~
    HUGZ

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  9. I too love those party hats that the chimneys are wearing. The second photo could almost be Saltaire. Our phone box sits in a little square just like that - I had to do a double-take! Enjoy your birthday treat.

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  10. My favorite photo is the last one. I was amused by the combination of smoked fish and what looks like a bunch of jesters laughing down from the roof, also by the idea of capturing the fish smell on film.

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  11. You're a neat story teller. An excellent photo of a pub sign and then you tell us you might visit that pub. I hope you have a great day.

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  12. You always give us something that inspires, Alan, whether prose or photo. Enjoy your holiday and bring back more sepia pics!

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  13. These are absolutely gorgeous. The human profiles in the first and second photos add so much.

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  14. I knew the Grimsby Fish Docks in the 1960s. Great photos, Alan.

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  15. What wonderful photographs. You are an accomplished photographer. American, and feeling terribly ignorant about the sense of abandonment you describe during the Thatcher years.

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  16. I love how you wove your personal push for time into the theme - thank you for a wonderful example of autoethnography!

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  17. I love your old pictures Alan ... glad that you found them and were able to scan them into your blog. My favorite is the time capsule one with the two people standing in the middle of the road. Sometimes you cannot beat black an white.

    Kathy M.

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  18. The black and white images are so powerful and tell a sad story. As you say the sense of abandonment is strong. A similar series depicting today's run-down High Streets could be a topic for the future.

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  19. Great photos Alan! I wonder what the two individuals are doing in the middle of the road in the third photo. Curious!

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  20. The Saloon Bar plaque is very interesting and different. I wondered if it was still there - did a quick google search at it was there first hit. See this

    http://www.travelswithbeer.com/2010/04/19/the-black-friar-london/

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  21. I know these are black and white photographs and, therefore, in shades of grey. But the sky looks so grey.... I think a blue sky would have looked lighter, even in a black and white photo. (Don't you often see colors in black and white photos and films? I do!) So, for the little guys with hats -- all they need are faces painted on and they could entertain the children.

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  22. I too wonder what's going on in the picture in the middle of the road. It does really look like a time of sad depression. The chimney posts are adorable, like little clowns! As for the dead fish smell, too funny, but yes the photos could be cool!

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  23. That final shot makes me think of the Seven Dwarves wearing little caps, except for the 7th one who must be Grumpy.

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  24. And that is a STUNNING carved sign!

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  25. There is soch a lonely abandonment in nearly all of these photos, Alan, and the B&W certainly contributes to the feeling.

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  26. Beautiful black and white photographs, trying to figure out what the two people are doing in the street in the second photo. Hope your weekend tour and libations are excellent!

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  27. Enjoyed seeing your photos - my favorite is the smoked fish house - the tops of the chimneys remind me of clown hats. Happy belated birthday - hope you have a wonderful time in London.

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  28. Stunning pics, Alan...always a treat...

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  29. That's how I remember seeing Elland in the late Sixties and Seventies. I always used to pass by a sign reading, 'Eli Garnett (Ltd)'): Laps, Noils and Wastes. I knew I had arrived in the North, then. Great photographs. Thank you.

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  30. My favorite photo is the first one. It's such a great example of Art Nouveau lettering. Hope you got to go to that pub on your weekend trip. BTW Happy Birthday.
    Nancy

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  31. You can feel the sense of desolation in these pictures. Is that a Vauxhall Viva? Brings back memories! Thanks for the smell of dead fish :-D Jo

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  32. I liked the last photo..but I couldn't quite smell the fish. I hope you have a grand time in London:)

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  33. There is still the smell of dead fish? It is gone from Scheveningen.

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