Firstly, and most importantly, I have a deep respect for each and every person who dedicated their time to walk in the name of respect and equality.
Secondly, the moment when the police allowed me to cross the barricade separating the marchers and the nationalists, I had a profound moment of realising the power of my camera. In that moment I didn’t carry a camera – I carried a passport. I was with those who fought for and with those who fought against. That magic invisibility coat I seemed to be wearing made me fell in love with photography again, and again.
When I first arrived 20 years ago I lived on Broadway Market and it had one fruit and veg barrow and one very nice pub. The rest of it was run-down; it was a proper working class street in Hackney. Stoke Newington Church Street has today become the model for what Jules Pipe – who’s the mayor – wants for Hackney. But Hackney isn’t like that. Most working class people on a budget wouldn’t be able to shop for food on Church Street because it’s artisan bakers and incredibly expensive fruit and veg shops.
It’s not about money. I don’t begrudge anybody as long as they’ve gone out and earned it. What I don’t like is the pretense and the assumption that someway or another Hackney needs to be grateful for all these up-and-coming industries. What’s wrong with a proper working class area having proper working class jobs?
The thing that Hackney people find frustrating is that they read about things in the newspaper and see stuff on the telly and they think ‘That’s not where we live.’ Though it may be geographically, it’s not their world, it’s not their environment.
I’ve been drinking in the Dove pub for years; it was on Broadway Market when I first lived there. You could say I kept it alive through its lean years. I still drink there very occasionally – I just avoid the strawberry Belgian beers.
– Grant Kingsnorth
Hackney bursts with colours. Going through the controversial process of being “redefined” as a new cool, it blends confused locals with the masses of hipsters. Witnessing the birth process of new Shoredich leaves me confused and lost.
the queue in the piccadilly circus tesco looks dreadful. i bump into tourists, madmen. this place is mad. epileptic advertisement screens seduce people like moths. i wonder why. i wish i could look at this place and see what you see. i guess i’m too busy standing in the queue.