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So, after a brief stop in Bounds Green we trundle back down to Wood Green.  Home to BBC rehearsal rooms etc.  As soon as we pop out upstairs I notice a bevy of hi-vi jacketed police, and in these security conscious times, wonder if this will prove  an interesting occasion.   I am not to be disappointed.

I stand beneath the station signage and G heads across the road to get a wide shot of the curved frontage.  As he's firing off shots one of the bobbies peels off and heads across the road.  I immediately think he's on an intercept course with the tall fella, think I'm just being paranoid as copper isn't in any kind of hurry, and am proved right as copper catches up with G on the traffic island and conversation ensues.  Fuzz talks to G, G turns to point at me, and I give a cheery wave back, Fuzz pulls out paperwork.  I can't just stand there, so take a stroll over to discover that G is getting a stop and search for the suspicious behaviour of taking photos of a local landmark in full view of a handful of police.  How dumb a crim would he have to be to be standing on a traffic island, wearing black, being an inconspicious six foot bleeding seven, carrying out nefarious activities with the police in their day glow stylishness being right bloody there? ...anyway, after losing my cool with the community policeman that stopped B taking pics at Waterloo, I remain chipper as G is written up.  I'm keeping the documentation as a Tubewhore artifact.  Helps that G has interesting ID to show...

Not living in London myself anymore, I hadn't seen the poster campaign urging Londoners to report people taking pictures of landmarks.  Seriously, what the hell is going on?  We seemed to have slipped sideways into Eastern Europe during the cold war where we're being encouraged to rat out the hordes of Italian exchange students taking photos of Nelson's Column.  There seems to be plenty of online backlash, but in all seriousness this new approach of civilain surveillance is desperately concerning. Who needs terrorists when we just have media hysteria to do all their work for them.  Amusingly, back underground - where we take loads of pictures thankeeverymuch...I spot a page from 1984, which has been photocopied and stuck up around the platforms; how very apt. 


...this does mean that exterior shots of Wood Green were limited to what we got before police intervention...when I do Arnos Grove and Southgate, I'll get more wide shots of the Wood Green station itself as it's rather lovely. 

Downstairs continues, and indeed expands, the vague Egyptian feel of the line, as the tiling colour are green and cream stripes reminding me of death masks and such-like.  Not so shiny and refurbished as Bounds Green though, but I also sort of like the scuffed-up grubbiness.  London is supposed to be a bit care-worn and battered looking...

grubby edges...



( 32 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:31 pm (UTC)
Ok - hold on...

I'm not understanding.

It's now discouraged to take photos of PUBLIC landmarks in London?

Why on Earth would that be?
Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:41 pm (UTC)
Re: Ok - hold on...
the policeman's comments was that we were acting suspiciously because we were taking photos of an 'iconic building'. Actually what he said was that Wood Green station was a 'local icon' but that's just silly English...

...but yes, on one hand amused to be seen to be so dangerous to democracy, and on the other bloody pissed off at how basic civil liberty to gurn at the camera is being treated as threatening. We are being cowed by degrees...and not enough fuss is being made about all the crap that is being imposed on us, all the surveillence carried out, in the name of this nebulous need for 'security'.

Re: Ok - hold on... - midnightxpress - Apr. 3rd, 2008 10:19 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Ok - hold on... - papajoemambo - Apr. 3rd, 2008 02:37 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Ok - hold on... - miss_soap - Apr. 3rd, 2008 08:28 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Ok - hold on... - papajoemambo - Apr. 3rd, 2008 02:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:33 pm (UTC)
Not living in London myself anymore, I hadn't seen the poster campaign urging Londoners to report people taking pictures of landmarks.

This is absofuckinlutely appalling. I'm going to link to this article.
Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:39 pm (UTC)
spread the word...

Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:39 pm (UTC)
The taking photos thing is just... depressing.

Do you mean that after the coppers talked to you, writing you up and everything, you weren't allowed to take photographs afterwards? Even after explaining?
Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:42 pm (UTC)
I don't think we'd have been arrested, but by that point we figured we had what I needed and went off to take platform shots. Only remembered after that I'd have liked a full shot of the station itself.
(Deleted comment)
(no subject) - midnightxpress - Apr. 3rd, 2008 10:02 am (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:40 pm (UTC)
Ignorance is Strength
I hadn't seen the poster campaign urging Londoners to report people
It's a very depressing, although equally I haven't encountered any aggro from it thus far (I'm half hoping that I'll get someone say something in response).
Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:44 pm (UTC)
Re: Ignorance is Strength
it's more than depressing, it's sapping something essential from the world...

...it's getting harder to be conspiciously weird, y'know. What with goths getting beaten to death, and everyone so jumpy about 'security', where's the fun? Where's my freedom to carry on the tradition of Great British Eccentrics gone?
Re: Ignorance is Strength - juggzy - Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - failing_angel - Apr. 2nd, 2008 10:55 pm (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 2nd, 2008 11:17 pm (UTC)
Just wondering, was the Stop issued by a PCSO? AIUI PCSOs can only Stop if under the supervision of a proper policeman, unless it's for anti-terror reasons. If it is for anti-terror reasons, taking photographs of a public place are not reasonable grounds. What was the reason given on the paperwork for the Stop?

(Amusingly, the reason given for a Stop in this instance was for having "Grey Hair".)
Apr. 3rd, 2008 10:16 am (UTC)
LOL...but then most coppers on the beat aren't there for their intelligence as proven by the link.

I agree that in a court of law he really didn't have "reasonable grounds". But I've been hit by a policeman's nightstick before (in the face) and decided just to answer his questions and laugh it of.

He was bored and saw two strange people in black and took it from there...
pcsos - (Anonymous) - Jun. 22nd, 2008 12:07 am (UTC) - Expand
Apr. 3rd, 2008 12:10 am (UTC)
If you see foreigners taking photographs please call the anti tourist line.
I have the anti terrorist phone number saved on my mobile... people were asked to do this presumably in case we overheard terrorists making dastardly plans. Although I think if I ever was in that situation I'd be calling 999 at the first safe opportunity. I have an idea that once through to the anti terrorist line I would find it to be menu driven and I'd be invited by a recorded voice to "Press 1 if you suspect an attack is imminent, press 2 if it is in the planning stages, press 3 if you want to give yourself up..." I franticly press 1 then get the next menu "Please press 1 to report Islamic fundamentalist activity, press 2 for anarchists, press 3 for separatist movements, press 4 for..." by then the bad guys would have noticed me and fled... or worse.

Somewhat surprised to discover from your link, that having two mobile phones marks people as a potential suspect... I carry two mobile phones pretty much all the time now. Why... well one has wifi and the other has a better interface for playing chess. I know other people who have a work phone and personal phone on them.
(Deleted comment)
May. 8th, 2008 12:13 pm (UTC)
this is another point - I was discussing this incident with some friends of the family and they were outraged that I'd been hassled by the fuzz mostly because I'm a nice middle-class white girl, so how could I be suspected me of terrorism? ...it's all very tangled, and I suspect contains a good dollop of Daily Mail indoctrination against brown people, as though it wouldn't have been equally unjustifed had I been Asian...
Apr. 3rd, 2008 06:17 am (UTC)
Given that I carry two phones, a phone/data-capable PDA, a Leatherman, camera and often assorted other tools I am clearly a dangerous terrorist and should hand myself in immediately.

On the other hand, since as far as I'm aware we haven't yet lost the War On Stuff I'll continue carrying everything as part of my own fight against the Evil Ones (whichever side they claim to be on).
Apr. 3rd, 2008 08:24 am (UTC)
My 76 year old mother has two mobile phones (it's a long story to do with network coverage). She also likes to take random photos. Better not bring her to London again. I keep waiting to be stopped because I like to photograph interesting things, although I do draw the line at photographing CCTV cameras. I like to wave at them though :-)

Some of us grew up through the IRA years, when mobiles did not exist. There is probably a point to that sentence but I can't think of it right now :-( Too early...

And I love the LOLcat poster on that link!
May. 8th, 2008 12:16 pm (UTC)
I sometimes like to make the point in photos of just how many surveillance cameras there are these days...it was in the news recently that they don't seem to be preventing crime, or helping that much with detection of crime despite high profile examples like the London Bombers movements being tracked on CCTV footage after the events of the 7th July. So if they aren't working, what are they being used for - gathering information on what people are up to? People that aren't breaking the law, but just might not be up to things the government approves of...
Apr. 3rd, 2008 09:02 am (UTC)
Yet they film us hundreds of times a day without our permission...

My mum was made to pull the film out of her camera (yes, it was a few years ago!!) when she took a picture of the Cardington Hangers for my grandad who was demobbed there after the war which could possibly be understandable sort of as they were being used for military equipment development at the time but in London?! One of the tourism hotspots of the world...I'm just imagining the prisons full of Japanese tourists and Women's Institute daytrippers...
Apr. 3rd, 2008 10:02 am (UTC)
Blimey. That is bloody ridiculous.
Apr. 3rd, 2008 12:15 pm (UTC)
Bloody police, i know they have a job to do but really...

Those interior shots are lovely. I see what you mean about London being a little grubby round the edges.
Apr. 4th, 2008 09:37 pm (UTC)
Here via juggzy too. Some laws are dumb, especially lots of new ones - but too often so are the people enforcing them.

But what's scary is that something like that might not have just been about heavy-handedness but also "getting the tick in the box" for the statistics (that this gov seem so enamoured of ...)
Apr. 8th, 2008 11:56 pm (UTC)
Bloody silliness. Give me a shout next time you have jobsworth coppers and a tube station you want snapping. Let's see em prevent *me* from taking photos of my place of work! ;-)
( 32 comments — Leave a comment )


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