Photographs of Bygone Bridgwater

I’ve had a week off work shis week, but the weather hasn’t really been ideal for landscapes and the forecast wasn’t looking any better for the rest of the week either, so yesterday I decided to do something a little different. I don’t often take detail shots, but when I do, it’s usually details of nature. Yesterday, I decided to look for little details in and around Bridgwater instead, with black and white in mind. To suit black and white, I was therefore looking for textures and shapes. The other reason for thinking about monochrome, was the idea of looking at details from a bygone era.
At first glance, there doesn’t seem to be much in Bridgwater, it’s a sizeable town, but the centre is very small for its size. However, dig a little deeper and you’ll find lots of history. Historically, it was closely associated with the industrial revolution, as so many towns and cities are and the remains of much of that activity is still visible. The obvious link to the past, is the Bridgwater and Taunton Canal, which links the rivers Tone and Parrett. At the Bridgwater end, is Bridgwater Quay, just before the entry into the tidal River Parrett. Alongside the quay, there are a number of old artefacts, such as mooring rings and gearwheels. Also, the lock gate between the canal itself and the quay is still in working order and serves as a footbridge across the canal.

As a source of experimentation, it went well, although, I will need to some retakes. Also, commercially, it probably makes more sense than my usual nature photography. At least I know that when the weather isn’t favourable for nature photography, I still have an outlet.

Bridgwater Canal

Last Sunday, I decided it was about time I went out again. The lighting was pretty much perfect for some shots I had been planning for almost two years, but had always found somewhere else to photograph. A few miles outside of central Bridgwater, the Bridgwater and Taunton Canal passes a pub called the Boat and Anchor Inn, near the Huntworth Business Park. It isn’t anything out of the ordinary as far as canal-side pubs go, but they do serve very good food and of course offer nice beer. I didn’t visit on this occasion though, as I wanted to catch the low sunlight lighting the pub buildings and the canal. However, my memory was a little faulty and the angle I was looking for wasn’t possible, so I concentrated more on the canal, where the light was ideal.

While I was photographing the first of my chosen views, a dog walker stopped to say hello and mentioned that they were showing the canal on Countryfile on BBC1 later that evening. We chatted for a while, with him stating that he hadn’t seen them filming, but I thought it was slightly ironic, that I’d chosen that evening to photograph the canal.