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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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

ART OF CONFLICT – UPDATE

Back in May, I blogged about a documentary being made by American TV that had asked me to supply stilled photographs of murals in Belfast.

This week, the makers got in contact to request further images. The images are of murals of David Healy, George Best, and a joint mural of Elisha Scott, Joe Bambrick and Tommy Dickson.

Their inclusion is good to see that the makers aren’t focusing on the cliched murals, and including positive and celebratory ones.

The film is currently “In the advanced stages of post-production”, so hopefully, there’ll be more developments regarding possible broadcast (I don’t know if there are any plans for a UK or Northern Ireland broadcast)

If you wish to find out more about it, there is a synopsis about it on the production company’s website.

The first photo submitted is ‘Football Heroes‘, which, as the name suggests, is a tribute to famous footballers from the Donegall Road area of Belfast.

The players featured are :Joe Bambrick, Tommy Dickson and Elisha Scott.

Joe Bambrick was a legendary goalscorer for Linfield and was Northern Ireland’s top goalscorer until the 1980s. His former home at Roden Street has a blue plaque outside. He once scored six goals in game for Northern Ireland, against Wales in 1930.

Tommy Dickson was a Linfield legend and captained the club’s Seven Trophy team. He also has a mural dedicated to him in Taughmonagh.

Elisha Scott was a former Linfield player best known for his time player for Liverpool before later managing Belfast Celtic.

A blogpost covering murals in Belfast relating to Linfield FC can be found here.

This picture of a George Best mural was taken in 2007 in Blythe Street in Sandy Row. Further up the street is a mural commemorating the 125th anniversary of Linfield FC.

Nearby, there is a mural of Best as you enter Windsor Park (alongside other Northern Ireland legends) as well one in Cregagh where he grew up. Another mural, on the Woodstock Road, was painted over in 2011

The third photo submitted is of David Healy’s goal against England in 2005.

This mural was originally painted from another angle across the road. That mural was moved in 2008 to accommodate a mural of David Ervine, who died in 2007.

A blog post about these three murals, from 2010, can be found here.

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

ART OF CONFLICT

Got an e-mail last night, unexpected and out of the blue, but definitely worth sharing.

It was from an American TV company looking to get clearance to use this photo of a mural of David Ervine in East Belfast as part of a documentary provisionally titled ‘Art Of Conflict’, looking at murals in Northern Ireland .

I’m presently in the process of signing off the relevant paperwork to approve this.

I’ll keep you updated over the coming months with regards to the progress of this show (If I hear anything) and if it gets broadcast in the UK .

The mural itself was erected in 2008, a year after Ervine’s death. It replaced a mural of David Healy’s goal against England in 2005, based on a photograph by William Cherry. To compensate for that, a new mural of Healy’s goal was painted across the road. The three murals are documented in this blog post from September 2010, A TALE OF TWO DAVIDS

Regular readers will of course be aware that I love my street art and murals, especially getting photographs of them.

To be honest, I’m not as fussed on the paramilitary or political ones. It may shock people, but not every mural in Belfast is a paramilitary or political one.

David Ervine’s son has, in recent years, become a muralist himself. His best known work is one of John Peel in the Cathedral Quarter.

Sport in Belfast also have been immortalised in paint. There was an Elisha Scott mural painted in West Belfast in 2010, Glentoran used to have one on the Newtownards Road . Crusaders have one on St Vincent Street , outside Seaview and there’s an Antrim GAA one in the Lower Ormeau .

Two of Belfast’s most famous sporting sons have the most wallspace dedicated to them. Alex Higgins two World Championship wins were already commemorated on the Donegall Road during his lifetime, and an impromptu mural was painted in the days after his death, outside The Royal Bar, where he frequented in his later years, and across the street from the apartment complex where he lived and died during his later years (There’s a wreath made out like a snooker table outside the building)

George Best was also muralised during his lifetime on the Woodstock Road . That mural has unfortunately gone, but there is one in Blythe Street in Sandy Row. George Best also appears on a mural of Northern Ireland football legends outside Windsor Park.

The other end of Blythe Street features a mural to commemorate the 125th anniversary of Linfield FC, unveiled in November 2011. Linfield are also represented with other wallspace in South Belfast . Taughmonagh sees a tribute to Tommy Dickson, unveiled in 2008 not long after his death, while The Village also features Dickson on a mural, alongside Joe Bambrick and Elisha Scott.

Joe Bambrick’s former home, not far away in Roden Street , has a blue plaque outside to commemorate this.

This blogpost, from August 2010 features Linfield murals ahead of the start of the club’s 125th anniversary season, while this one features the Weavers To Winners launch from November 2011

Just goes to show, there are some hidden gems amongst Belfast ’s murals if you look in the right places.