" Tombstones that mark the demise of community "
In mid November 2016 I was struck by the sight of my local pub as it lay in a decayed state having been closed for many years. I then came across the remains of a local boxing club that had lost the fight against a changing youth culture. Both of these sights filled me with sadness . As a photographer who had invested his life recording everyday happenings in the hope of understanding the society I live in, I began to wonder if the everyday things that were not happening were having the greatest impact on our communities.
My thoughts then moved towards the failed businesses that both these buildings had once housed and the sense of loss that must have been felt at the time of closure, I considered the people who were no longer able to socialise in these facility's, and felt a greater sadness, these thoughts inspired me to start The Closed Doors Project as i began to believe that these often overlooked derelict entrances to the past symbolised much more than entrepreneurial failure, . to me they represented social, political and economic failure, these closed doors could be read as barometers of austerity as they appear to measure the slow erosion of community and that is perhaps the greatest loss of all.
Individually these works tell a depressing story, collectively they may help us understand the country's political climate that led to the Brexit vote !
The surprise for me while shooting this very simple project was the discovery of the inherent beauty that these gateways to the past possessed, they appear to take on a dignified stance against modernism, like abstract tombstones that mark the death of community and mourn the passing of lost opportunities.