PHOTO DIARY OF A FOOTBALL SEASON – JUNE/JULY

For me, the 2012-2013 season began just two and a half weeks after the 2011-2012 season ended.

I had thought about going to the Holland v Northern Ireland game when it was announced, but I was going to Amsterdam in February 2012, so the idea was put on the shelf.

In March 2012, I won free flights with an airline. I had to redeem my prize within three months. Looking through the possible destinations, a trip to Amsterdam for the Northern Ireland match soon became a no brainer.

I had a great weekend in Amsterdam, and having been there before was so useful in getting around. Fantastic city, fantastic stadium, unfortunately, Holland have a fantastic football team (though they didn’t show it at Euro 2012)

The seat I had wasn’t that great for match photos, but I still managed to get some good shots.

My next football shots, came off the pitch in late June, as a new mural in Sandy Row celebrated the life of local heroes, including those who’ve had football careers such as Tommy Dickson and Joe Bambrick.

July started with European football, going to Linfield and Crusaders home matches.

The Crusaders match, v Rosenborg, was the most productive of the two in terms of phototaking, with the closeness to the pitch and a bright night making for good conditions.

The month ended with the Pre-Season Friendly between Orangefield OB and Linfield. It was a mixed night in terms of phototaking, but I got a good one of Orangefield’s bench.

Holland v Northern Ireland

Holland v Northern Ireland Photo Album

Linfield v B36 Torshavn

Crusaders v Rosenborg

Crusaders v Rosenborg Photo Album

Orangefield OB v Linfield

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TITANIC MEN

Was out in Sandy Row last week researching murals in the area, and came across one i’d never seen before.

It was one depicting workers in the shipyard building the Titanic. It featured a row of men, while behind them is the Samson and Goliath, and the newly opened Titanic Building.

It’s not far from the Sandy Row Hall Of Fame mural, which I blogged about last year.

Quick web research suggests that it was painted last August. My bad for noticing it until now, as I have hardly ventured to Sandy Row lately.

The launch of the Hall Of Fame mural got some good media coverage, here in the Belfast Telegraph, and here on UTV Live.

It is quite funny, six months on, to hear the reporter say that part of the mural is to encourage people not to leave the area, as a mural of Albert Watson, who recently emigrated to Canada comes into shot.

I went and got some further shots of the Wall Of Fame.

Meanwhile, I got some further shots of Graffiti/Street Art round the back of The Fly, and Catalyst Arts Centre.

Enjoy

Photo Album

2012 IN PICTURES – JUNE

Not a lot happening this month, but still managed to get some good photos.

At the start of the month, I went to Amsterdam to see Northern Ireland play, and got some nice photos of the stadium (my seat was too far for match photos) and Street Art within Amsterdam.

Less said about the actual football, the better.

Fantastic city, can’t suggest you visit there enough.

Talking of Street Art, there was a Sandy Row Hall Of Fame mural launched in June, and I went out and got some snaps of the Linfield players featured, as well as Alex Higgins.

Amsterdam Street Art

Amsterdam Street Art Photo Album

Holland v Northern Ireland

Holland v Northern Ireland Photo Album

Graffiti Round-Up

Knitted Art

Sandy Row Hall Of Fame/Rory McIlroy Mural

SANDY ROW HALL OF FAME

Was out for a cycle today. Not in Liege, but in Holylands and Sandy Row.

Managed to get some pictures of new murals.

The first new mural is of Rory McIlroy, in the Holylands.

Meanwhile, en route from Holylands to Sandy Row, I encountered some more Knitted Art (blogged about last week) outside The Empire.

In Sandy row, I got some pictures of a new mural, on Stroud Street.

It’s a street long mural focusing on various aspects of life in Sandy Row through the years.

There is depictions of fruit sellers, and men who worked in the tram depot at Sandy Row, as well as local sporting successes such as various Boxing champions, Alex Higgins, and local footballers such as Grant and Ryan McCann, current Linfield players Daryl Fordyce and Albert Watson, as well as Linfield legends Tommy Dickson and Joe Bambrick.

The image of Higgins is of the iconic of him carrying his young child after winning the 1982 World Championship.

For some, it is not their first time being immortalised in mural form.

Alex Higgins is commemorated on a mural painted immediately after his death outside The Royal Bar, a street away. He frequented, and lived opposite the bar in his later years.

Further on down the Donegall Road, there is another mural of him. This photo was taken in 2007.

Grant McCann features on a mural opposite Days Hotel alongside Warren Feeney Jr (who, as far as I know, doesn’t come from Sandy Row)

Joe Bambrick and Tommy Dickson also feature on a mural of local footballing legends in The Village, while Bambrick’s former home at Roden Street gets a blue plaque, and Tommy Dickson has a mural in Taughmonagh.

Enjoy

Photo Album

PHOTO DIARY OF A FOOTBALL SEASON : NOVEMBER

A busier month than the previous two, it started with a trip to Old Trafford to see United take on Sunderland.

As luck would have it, it was the weekend that Sir Alex Ferguson celebrated his 25th anniversary in charge at United.

Didn’t get many shots of the game as I was too far up, I did get some nice shots outside the ground.

The following midweek, I got a nice crowd shot at The Oval when Linfield played Glentoran.

There was a new Linfield mural in Sandy Row, which is well worth checking out. Unsurprisingly, I went to get a photo of this.

On the last weekend of the month, I visited the newly rebuilt Seaview for the first time as Linfield faced Carrick Rangers and got some nice shots of it.

Enjoy

Manchester United v Sunderland

Manchester United v Sunderland Photo Album

Weavers To Winners

Carrick Rangers v Linfield

2011 IN PICTURES – DECEMBER (SO FAR)

Of course, there’s still nine days left of the month, but as i’m wanting to get this series wrapped up before Christmas, here’s what i’ve got of December so far.

Won tickets for Ulster v Aironi, so I took up the offer of a bit of free Rugger, so I headed to Ravenhill to get some not bad photos.

The following day, I was at Seaview for Linfield’s visit and got some OK photos. Nothing special

I’d hoped to get a better photo of the Linfield mural on Blythe Street.

But alas, there is always a car parked in front of it when I want to get a snap, but I will try and get one.

While I was failing in that task, I did manage to get a nice photo of the winter sun.

Ulster v Aironi

Ulster v Aironi Photo Album

Crusaders v Linfield

Linfield v Glenavon

LINFIELD 1-0 GLENAVON 17.12.2011

Not the most exciting of games, but a 1-0 win, which will do I suppose.

Managed to get some photos, nothing special.

Was on a half-day yesterday and had some time to kill, so I headed round to Sandy Row to try and get a better photo than the one I have of the Linfield mural.

Unfortunately, as with every time I try to get a photo, there seems to be a car parked in front of it, thus ruining it.

Anyhow, I managed to get a nice arty photo of Blythe Street.

Enjoy

Photo Album

WEAVERS TO WINNERS

Last Thursday (17th November) saw the unveiling of a mural in Sandy Row commemorating the 125th anniversary of Linfield FC.

The image, located on Blythe Street, depicts the clubs first title winning team in 1891, who, like their 2011 counterparts won the Irish Cup as well, with the text commemorating the milestones of the club’s 125th anniversary and 50th title win, achieved this year.

It’s not the only football mural on Blythe Street, as this image of George Best is at the other end of the street.

There are, of course, other Linfield related murals in Belfast. A full blog of them, written at the start of the 2010-2011 season can be found here

UTV Report

Linfield website

2010 IN PICTURES – JULY

Not a lot happening in this month, the STLFTEM came right on the very last day when I went to see (for free) Adam Hills live at Mandela Hall.

The first half of the month was obviously spent watching the later rounds of the World Cup, and within days, the early rounds of the European Cup, where I ventured to Windsor Park to see Linfield take on Rosenborg.

I also managed to take in a pre-season friendly between Linfield and Dunmurry Rec, and Dunmurry’s ground was amateur photographer friendly.

Some interesting Street Art also popped up in Belfast during the month, as various stencils of popculture icons appeared in the Woodstock Road, and a mural tribute to the recently deceased Snooker legend Alex Higgins appeared outside the Royal Bar in Sandy Row.

Enjoy.

NEW ALEX HIGGINS MURAL

Got this brought to my attention on Saturday, of a new Alex Higgins mural at the side of The Royal Bar in Sandy Row, where he frequented in his later years and across the road from the apartment where he died.

Apologies for the photo quality, as it was hard to get into a good position due to the traffic passing.

It’s a truly excellent and eye-catching mural and well worth checking out.

The more eagle-eyed of you will have noticed a piece of paper beside the mural.

It isn’t actually a note of condolence, but a note informing people that there is still wet paint there.

Interestingly, whilst I was getting photographs of it, locals were approaching me and talking about Alex Higgins in an affecionate way, under the mistaken impression that I was a journalist photographing it for a newspaper.

Meanwhile, the other mural that I had highlighted last week has had a few licks of paint and a tidy up, which is good to see.

Enjoy