My Mum has been working on arranging for my Grandad’s name to be put onto a plaque in Portsmouth – to remember the Portsea Mudlarkers from years gone by. Well today we got to see the statue and the latest addition of names, including my Grandad’s and his brother’s. Sadly, he isn’t here to see today but we took my Grandma so that she could see his name set in stone – under the guise that we were going down to see the boats.

Margaret Foster, local councillor in Portsmouth, was the force behind the statue being created and raised money so that it could become possible. She’s written a book about the Mudlarks as well and money raised goes to local causes. Margaret was there today and had gathered a small crowd. The plaque was a new addition to the statue which had been placed there in 2010, looking out over the Portsmouth mud flats with an eye on the Spinnaker Tower and HMS Warrior.

The statue celebrates parts of Portsmouths heritage and the fascinating history of the children that used to work in the mud in the very spot that it now sounds. Mudlarking was a form of begging back in the day and involved children diving, frollicking, crawling and rolling in the mud for coins that were often thrown to them by passing people entertained by their antics. My Grandad was one of them, over eighty years ago, working hard to earn a few bob to take home.

“E ah guv stick a penny in the mud,

A “penny or two won’t break yer,

We take all your rusty silver,

We loves you lady, we loves you lady,

But we loves your money the best.”

After seeing the statue, it seemed fitting to spend some time enjoying the views across Portsmouth and the place where my Grandad grew up. The views were breath-taking and as the sun went down, it was the perfect end to a very important and poignant day.

If you’re ever in Portsmouth and visiting the Historic Dockyard, take a minute to pause outside the entrance and enjoy a little bit of History. You won’t regret it.

Frosty tales

“All you’ll own is earth until you can paint with all the colours of the wind.”

There are some things that just need to be captured on camera, to be remembered forever. Not huge moments – not all the time. Today whilst we were wandering through a frosty forest, the first thought that hit me when I raised the camera and took a shot of nothing but nature was… ‘It’s so nice not to be photographing someone’s face.’ Don’t get me wrong, I’ve loved the Weddings that we’ve had this year and every single one has been fantastic and such an experience. But today was about photographing anything. And it felt so good to be doing it again.

Photographs don’t have to be perfect, but I was impressed with the below capture. Fog, sunshine, rays, cobwebs…all so hard to capture spontaneously and never how they showed up in real life. I looked closer at the below image and noticed the cobweb hanging down through the middle of it, covered in ice. I was almost annoyed at the interruption within my perfect scene. Almost. Then I realised it was all part of the perfect scene.

Today we had some bits and pieces to do so we decided to take hot tea and just drive for a bit, and capture what we could of the morning fog. A curse for so many but a delight for photographers! All of these captures were taken literally on our doorstep. The forest that borders where we live is home to some beautiful scenes, it’s just a huge pain to get to with the dog as the road leading to it has no paths or pavement. So she doesn’t feature today sadly.

So back to those small moments that need to be captured every so often. Today I ticked a few off the list – an image of exactly what it looks like when all around you branches are creaking and frost is melting. That spiders web gently swinging laden with frost. The tiny dew drops framed in sunlight. The shadow of trees as the sun streams through them. Everyday things sometimes, but so beautiful when you have the time to stop and look at them all.

New Years resolution for 2017 – there will be more Photos. Promise.

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