David Simper picks up his camera and takes a bracing winter wander around our beloved Stanley Park.

Over weight due to Christmas indulgence and getting old, I set off for our park to take the air and get some exercise. I was wrapped up warm. There were plenty of people around. With HP5 film left in the camera after Catherine’s and my trip to tour the heritage tram depot with Bryan Lindop at Blackpool Transport Services and prepare an article for this site, I had the Leica CL with me fitted with my 50mm Jupiter lens, proudly proclaiming ‘Made in USSR’. A lovely lens with few vices and marvellous tonality.

The shot up the drive towards the Cocker clock tower must have been taken millions of times, but that’s a million different shots all unique depending on the light quality. Winter light through cloud has a pearly nature, low contrast but through a yellow filter (my favourite) giving pleasant tonal range. With a nice fast black and white film, you can just keep shooting. The little copse like group of silver birch by the path gave some stark contrast. I never tire of sketching and photographing this park; where would Blackpool be without it?

Some of the park buildings are graffitied, artistically in their own way but could that talent be better employed? A decent sketchbook isn’t that much, especially from a budget place. It would be good to see all the park’s buildings back in use and thriving. The new skate park should give it a lift. The council’s workers and the Friends of Stanley Park group do their best to keep up with park maintenance, including combating vandalism.

Anti-avian flu barriers prevented my usual lakeside walk routine. At least the frankly ugly barriers (what barriers aren’t?) gave a new photographic perspective, making their backgrounds look even better if anything. Twenty five of our lovely swans and two geese have been killed by this vile flu and no doubt other species. I understand that people have been breaching the barriers and going down to the water, which is just despicable. Don’t do that, just don’t.


With my film expended, I retired to the coffee shop takeaway hatch and took a decaf into the rose garden. No roses at present of course but it’s good to sit in there and have a warm drink and a think (about what I forget). Hopefully the avian flu will recede allowing the swans to breed back before too long. The barriers can be removed and we can return to the water’s edge. I look forward to the roses blooming in the garden once more and watching the dragon and damsel flies that appear in that garden. Don’t dragon flies have such a primaeval aura around them?




  • I have worked in the housing and transport professions for several local authorities, specialising in policy, strategy preparation and bid writing. Having always had an interest in film, the visual arts in general, theatre, music and lterature, I thought it would be good to combine the writing experience with these interests to contribute to altBlackpool. In addition to writing, my hobbies include watercolour and pastel painting, photography, woodwork, cycling and vegetable gardening.

  • Show Comments (0)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


You May Also Like

Judgement Day 2

Gallery: Judgement Day 2

Saturday saw around 3,000 Blackpool FC fans take to the streets to protest against ...

Gallery: Winter Gardens Open Day 2018

How lucky we are in Blackpool to have a number of entertainment complexesย with most ...