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A misleading picture from Andy Wilkes

.: No Photography. G4S Temple Mills Lane. May 2009No Photography. G4S Temple Mills Lane. May 2009

There is an ongoing stand-off between Olympic security guards and photographers with the Old Bill playing coy referee. There is a recent discussion about these issues on the British Journal of Photography blog

Andy Wilkes pitches in with his comment on 24 Apr 2012 at 19:24

"Take any camera you want. I take everyday 2 cameras inside the park to document the build from the inside a compact and a Canon DSLR with large lenses and have done since 2008 and have never been told to stop etc. I regularly walk the edges taking pictures and video and again never been stopped."

Andy Wilkes

"I'm a 39 year old, father of 5, who after following his father round the world with the British Army was educated at a British Military School in Kent. Enrolled in the Civil Service (MoD) at 18 to pursue a civil service career, but took voluntary redundancy 13 years later. Found myself working in the construction Industry doing IT, Information Management, and Project Administration. Saw a job for SKANSKA PLC UK working on the Olympic Site in 2008, applied, got the job and have been working on the Olympic Site since July 2008. Working for a construction company on the site of the Olympic Games has been a massive privilege for me and I have literally seen the old rundown site disappear and this amazing state of the art Olympic Park rise from the rubble. Having a passing interest in photography I started to document the progress of the site in an online blog starting in early 2009. It's just a photo Blog with few words but has generated great interest and has been featured on the BBC, Guardian, TimeOut London & Londonist websites numerous times. From:"Storytellers

Oh marvellous, so anyone could do what Andy is doing? I don't think so. Andy is being disingenuous about his situation. In order to take his pictures Andy has gone through a number of screening procedures to get to his privileged viewpoint.

  1. He got a job working for Skanska contracted to work for the ODA. A Tier 1 contractor employee would probably by virtue of his work have regular permitted access across the site.
  2. He would have been through security checks suitable for his level of responsibility. His military and Civil Service background would help.
  3. He would be wearing appropriate site clothing including a visible identity tag
  4. His taking pictures would be acceptable to the ODA because he is a fan of the Olympics project. He has 'official' approval for what he is doing. He is the only amateur photographer taking and publishing these stages of construction pictures from the inside.
  5. Anyone known to be critical of the project would have no chance of being able to wander freely about the site as he does taking pictures.The ODA are hypersensitive to such persons being allowed airtime.
  6. British Telecom Storytellers retain editorial control

He says on his Storytellers page:

I thoroughly enjoy sharing the progress with everyone as it's a closed site due to security etc I though people would be interested in how it was progressing from the inside, as it were.

Meanwhile the rest of us 'other ranks' are left on the outside to test the whims of security guards who are I think already operating under clear guidelines.


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