Photos November 2009; Remembrance Sunday Cardigan

It’s our second November at Umsinga and Remembrance Sunday has become already a strong presence in our lives.

As we live so close to the cenotaph (the final shot in this gallery is from our bedroom window) we are politely asked to move our car from the street the night before and we are awakened by the Environmental Services Team from Ceredigion County as they announce their early morning street clean with orange flashing lights.

I say this not with any sense of resentment but to illustrate how the Remembrance Sunday experience for me has been transformed. The bland, stuffy and hide-bound BBC coverage is nothing compared to seeing your own community paying its respects to dead and the living service men and women. The young, the old, the VERY old, the great and the good, the Ex-service and the serving; the crunching tramp of boots, the brass band, the chill, and the nervously wavering Last Post. You can not do anything BUT remember.

Photographing this event has its difficulties. The local press photographer, after years of covering it, doubtless has reconciled some of these difficulties; he knows where to stand, when it is appropriate to ‘shoot’ (with his ‘Canon’) and I guess even what NOT to shoot.

But because it is demonstrably an emotional occasion, a complex mix of personal and public grieving, I could not escape feelings of intrusion. I stepped back and the result is a set of photographs that I feel lack engagement.

Paul Williams

This is the blog of Paul Williams, Ceredigion resident since 1970. I am an English and Philosphy graduate of what was once known as St David's University College, at Lampeter. I played bass in Dyfed's first punk band, and living in Llandewi Brefi, had a grandstand view of Operation Julie. Eventually, after 2 years playing bass in Brighton's 256th punk band, I returned to Wales to deal in books and then antiques. I've trained and worked as a counsellor, I am a photographer, blog and web designer and I publish the annual Wales Antiques Guide. I am married and a father of one. Apart from my family, my interests include books, maps, Nikon, Yashica and Mamiya film cameras, British Culture 1935 - 1965, Poole pottery, Welsh textiles, and Poster art. My favourite movies include anything by Pressburger and Powell favourite music includes Gene Clark, Gram Parsons, and anything form San Francisco 1965-1970. I am a late convert to 'Kraut Rock'.

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4 Responses

  1. Ian says:

    Tough task but 9 and 10 are the ones I like.

  2. Ian Marchant says:

    10 is great, by anybodies standards. I was in the ATC, but we didn’t have hot chicks in sweaters and sensible tights in those days…

  3. I feel that may have been for the best…

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