This is the fourth instalment of my diary/travelogue/waytorememberitinyearstocome, recording a couple of weeks spent travelling around Europe shooting black and white film.
Other parts are here:
Part 1 – Cossington, UK – Wioska, PL – Bratislava, SK
Part 2 – Bratislava, SK – Orosháza, HU – Szeged, HU – Cossington, UK
Part 3 – Cossington – Newcastle
Monday 24th April – Newcastle, ENG to Glencarse, SCO.
I woke early and waited for the headache to kick in… It didn’t! For the first time in a week, and despite a load of great beer the night before, I was pain free, at least for the time being. We ate a breakfast of sausage and pancakes and browsed records in the excellent ‘Long Play Café’ before another quick stroll around the city centre.
My city has a river, but it’s a grotty little stream compared to the mighty Tyne. Our bridges are nothing compared to even the most modest of those that link Newcastle and Gateshead. And so walking around the Quayside, I never quite come to terms with the huge bulk of the Tyne Bridge particularly, as it towers above everyday life.
We hung out for a while on the low-level Swing Bridge, marvelling at the engineering on show, as Newcastle went to work. For the first time on my travels over the previous week, it felt like I was ‘getting into character’ and beginning to take some better pictures.
From Newcastle, we took ‘The Coastal Route’ (as the brown signs called it) north, passing through Bulmour, Alnwick and a dozen more pretty villages. It was beginning to feel like we were getting away from the nonsense of Brexitland, an election called for the wrong reasons and the general impatience and intolerance of everyday life further south. The area was photogenic too.
I saw the sea for the first time in 2017 at Cambois Beach and enjoyed views of its smelting works and industrial port.
It was time to unleash the second camera of the trip – the awesome Fuji GW690ii, a medium format rangefinder. I used the same Ilford FP4 as the Leica was using as I was keen for the results from the whole trip to have a similar look.
Another stop in Berwick-Upon-Tweed, to admire another bridge – the 1920’s concrete beauty that used to carry the A1 north to Scotland. Thankfully, it is now bypassed, but it remains a stunning structure.
Another brief diversion to see the bridges crossing the Forth. We didn’t have a huge amount of time, but enough to be reminded what a spectacular thing the rail bridge is, and also see how special the new road bridge will be when it’s finished.
We compared the photographic opportunities of Leicestershire to what we’d seen through today and concluded that while it was handy for London, we probably lived in one of the dullest counties in the country…
We paid a brief visit to Iain’s friend Jim to admire his analogue synthesiser set-up before rushing on to Perth, for an appointment with a chip shop, a shopping trip for wine, flowers and alcohol before arriving at our hosts for the evening,
We had a lovely welcome from Pam and her mum and enjoyed an evening of tales from Hungary, of Emily and the life of Mary’s Polish father. We made plans for the morning and hoped that the forecast snow stay further north…
All photos taken on Ilford FP4+ on either a Leica M6 with 35mm Summicron-M ASPH lens or a Fuji GW690ii. They were processed in Ilford DD-X and scanned at home.