1. This is the last week to take part in the survey commissioned by Network Rail in conjunction with Middlesex University on the subject of suicide prevention on the railways - and as it's such an important topic (and a very well constructed survey) we wanted to give this particular survey a bit more visibility. You can find out more and take part in the survey if you wish by taking a look at this thread - deadline is 16th September.

Had problems taking pictures of the railways?

Discussion in 'Photography Advice & Discussion' started by Snapper, 1 Apr 2008.

  1. deltic1989

    deltic1989 Established Member

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    Further to my post which I believe was a couple of years ago now, I have one or two other things to report.

    Birmingham New Street- Not a problem as such but more a mistake on my part that led to a friendly warning from a member of NR staff...
    I was making a change at BHM with my mrs and youngest Daughter, taking her on a trip for her Birthday. I was setting up to take a photo of a Voyager, when silly me forgot to turn the auto flash off. Lo and behold the flash popped up and a nearby NR lady said, "No flash photography please sir", I looked at the top of my camera and replied "oh damn sorry" she goes on to say that because its a dark environment it may affect a drivers sighting of a signal, which I thought was a fair comment. She then said if you want some good pictures pop to the end of the platform and wait for a Pendolino to come through, explaining the light was better there and so on, which I thought was really nice of her so I thanked her and moved to her recommended spot and true to her word I got a smashing shot.

    and at Nottingham an HST driver said to me that he had no issue with me photographing his train, but asked if I could avoid getting him in shot as he apparently doesn't come out to well in photos. I jokingly asked if he was a vampire to which he bared his teeth in the manner of Dracula and laughed.

    Nothing major not that I would even discribe the above as incidents as such, both times the staff were very polite....jovial even.

    I have in the main been met with tolerance and a welcoming environment. I was even invited into the station office at Newark NG (a place I had a small issue before) for a cuppa on a windy afternoon, sharing a chat and showing my photos to the bloke in there who seemed to love his job and was very enthusiastic about my pictures. He did however caution me against selling them, which I told him I had no intention of doing, I was just going to print some off and hang them on my wall and put the rest on Flikr.
     
  2. Harbon 1

    Harbon 1 Member

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    Is that the same 'enthusiastic' fella that does the announcements there? ;) :lol:
     
  3. ash39

    ash39 Established Member

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    Just had my first incident with a jobsworth at York.

    I was waiting for the 67 drag and set up the tripod to take a shot of the DVT whilst I waited. There were people in hi viz roaming about but with a long exposure theyd be rendered invisible and wouldn't ruin the shot.

    I was approached by one of them, very short miserable old man, who said I'd better be quick. Initially i thought he was making conversation and saying the 67 would be in the way shortly, but he then followed up with 'because if you get a photo whilst im working down there, I'll kick your camera over that fence'

    That really wound me up, I can't stand it when people open a conversation like that. I suggested that if he'd just asked politely for me not to be in the shot, I wouldn't have had a problem. He then went down the not having permission to take photos on private property route, which I know is untrue but couldn't see how the situation could improve so walked away, got a couple of shots of the 67 and moved on.

    I could understand if I was in his face with the camera, or crossing the platform boundry or creating an obstruction but i was minding my own business taking a few photos. Not the first example of unnecessarily rude east coast staff I've encountered.
     
  4. electra27000

    electra27000 Member

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    Make a complaint. There's no excuse for that kind of threatening behaviour from anyone. It's only a shame you didn't get his name.
     
  5. 43167

    43167 Established Member

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    If its the same guy who I think it is. I know who Ash means. Did the man also wear glasses?.

    Last year when there were the drags via the joint, he remarked 'when you lot have finished, i've got a job to do'. And as far back as 2000, there were some Newark-Doncaster drags via the Lincoln avoider, one service was a HST been dragged by a 47 and someone was filming at Doncaster waiting for the powercars shutter to be closed after the 47 had been removed.

    He isnt based at York, because the staff there are generally very nice.

    The only other problem ive seen there was caused by people down the ramp.
     
  6. ash39

    ash39 Established Member

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    Ironically slowing down the process!

    Yeah think he did have glasses actually.
     
  7. 43167

    43167 Established Member

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    It sounds very much like him.
     
  8. D2022

    D2022 Member

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    Last Monday I popped to the EWS stabling point at Transfer yard in Swindon to phot a 66 that was there. Stood on the public road, no tripod, just my phone. About tenins of waiting and a bloke in a tango suit wanders out the EWS gates shouting 'you can't bloody take photos here' to which I replied about being on public land etc. He got fairly annoyed and then pointed out that due to my age I should learn some respect for those who work for a living. My reply annoyed him even greater when I pointed out I work in the Network Rail office at Swindon.

    Anyway, he got more and more annoyed. So I walked off and went the other side of the bridges, only for him to walk up the line to come speak to me oncemore. Again, general harassment from the guy which ended with him threatening to call the police. So I beat him too it and dialled 99, showing him the phone and my thumb on the call button. He backed down then and went back to his portacabin.

    Not once did I step foot off public land, or take a photo of him. He never gave any reasons nor excuses for his attitude. Missed my shots though thanks to him.
     
  9. Tim R-T-C

    Tim R-T-C Established Member

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    Wow. Some people need more real work to do. The RAF at Waddington long ago realised they could not prevent people photographing from the public roads around the base. Obviously Swindon works is far more secret...
     
  10. D2022

    D2022 Member

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    If we HAD a works I could half understand it, we haven't even got a fueling point, just some portacabins and a few buildings for the EWS drivers to make cups of tea.

    Come to think about it, it may be because of the HOOB being built.
     
  11. ash39

    ash39 Established Member

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    Doubt it mate, just sounds like general jobsworthery to me.
     
  12. D2022

    D2022 Member

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    Some sad people out there, it's totally not needed. One day we will be able to phot in freedom:D
     
  13. 221129

    221129 Established Member

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    I Recently had a problem at Eggesford With two others when we entered the platform 2 guys shouted at us and then gave us a load of rubbish. So we ignored them took our photos and left.
     
  14. NSEFAN

    NSEFAN Established Member

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    To be fair it has got better recently. I remember a few years ago when there was serious concern over the future of rail photography on stations. Luckily it's all died down.

    Hopefully it will only get better, provided nobody does anything stupid like get themselves run over whilst trying to get that perfect shot. :roll:
     
  15. Temple Meads

    Temple Meads Established Member

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    It's usually "security" reasons rather than health and safety when it comes to persecuting rail enthusiasts.
     
  16. james60059

    james60059 Member

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    Sometimes I'll pop down Bedworth Oil Terminal for a phot of whatever loco has worked in, generally the loco parks near a palisade fence just wide enough to fit a lens through and never had any problems, in fact one guy at the terminal spoke to me like he knew me - he did as well as I went to school with him 15 years previous :lol:
     
  17. David Goddard

    David Goddard Member

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    Got stopped at Wokingham station by an SWT employee this lunchtime and was quizzed as he saw my camera (I only called in to photograph the new station building).
    Was asked about what I was taking photos of, if it was for commercial reasons, and whether I had permission.
    I quoted the guidelines for enthusiasts on the Network Rail website and he continued with more questions such as whether I had a ticket to travel etc, at which point felt he was going down the ticketless travel route, at which point I said I intended to leave the station. I said this was the first time I had had an issue on SWT managed stations, that I will now go home, and contact Customer Services.

    At this point he advised that permission was needed and they had been told in a recent memo to challenge everyone they saw with a camera.
    Has anyone else experienced problems at SWT managed locations in recent weeks?

    I was intending to make the purchase of a rather expensive rail ticket from Wokingham in the next few weeks, but if I am not welcome at their station will take my business elsewhere and buy from FGW at Reading, so they get the commission instead.
     
  18. causton

    causton Established Member

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    Interesting. I will be on the SWT network on Thursday, and if this is true I look forward to being as blunt as possible with the people enforcing these stupid made-up rules! :)
     
  19. trentside

    trentside Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    In such circumstances, I'd be requesting to speak to the station supervisor or manager to clarify the points made, especially if they're claiming to have had a "memo". If the supervisor is unhelpful, then walk away and contact customer services. I hope this is a one off incident, but if not, then SWT need to be challenged on this.
     
  20. Keith Jarrett

    Keith Jarrett Established Member

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    I suspect that this is "local" rules. So if they have been "instructed" to stop everyone they see with a camera, presumably that will include everyone brandishing a mobile phone with a camera. Probably not, just those with Digital SLRs. There's nothing on the SWT website about personal photography, just a comprehensive section on commercial photography.

    As an aside, I spent about eight hours on Eastleigh last Friday with a camera with no problem at all. And I was not the only one there with a camera either. At one point, I noted the platform staff having a light hearted conversation with one group of enthusiasts. There's even a poster at the northern end of platforms 2/3 giving guidelines on behaviour for visiting enthusiasts - usual stuff about staying in public areas, not getting in the way of passengers/staff etc. Not a shred about a "ban" on photography for personal purposes.
     
  21. 158747

    158747 Member

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    The SWT employee at Wokingham sounds to me like the sort of jobsworth with ideas above his station that you hear about from time to time. Probably thinks that being in uniform he has more authority than he actually has and enjoys harassing people for the sake of it to show how important he thinks he is.
     
  22. Peter Mugridge

    Peter Mugridge Established Member

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    A very appropriate phrase in the circumstances...
     
  23. alexdodds

    alexdodds Member

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    On Friday night in Manchester I got yobsworthed rather than jobsworthed I should say. Was filming some trams at st peter's square metrolink and a skinhead bloke sitting behind me went oi to me, asked what I was filming and told me to get a life. He thought i was filming people and he didnt like that. First time in 3 and a half years I have had grief on one of my outings
     
  24. trentside

    trentside Established Member Senior Fares Advisor

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    That's unfortunate, alexdodds - but these things happen unfortunately.

    It's actually quite pleasing to see how few incidents are now occurring with staff on the railways and photographers. If this thread is anything to go by, it would seem the message has finally got across.
     
  25. telstarbox

    telstarbox Established Member

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    I sometimes have to take photos of buildings and roads in towns for work. Usually I try to avoid getting people too close up in the shot ( partly as they're often in the way of the subject) but sometimes it can't be helped. The public don't have a general right not to be photographed although I wouldn't necessarily get into that debate!
     
  26. alexdodds

    alexdodds Member

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    Always tends to be light rail/tram systems that feature people who are camera shy. T&W metro is worse for camera shy folk
     
  27. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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    Was at Gatwick earlier as I wanted to try some photos of the aircraft landing as the flight path is directly over the railway boundary and also grab a quick pic of my train I traveled in on - BIG MISTAKE, got reported for being "suspicious" this is despite fact I was not using flash, kept well back from platform edge and didn't interfere with staff working not to mention it was painfully obviously I was more interested in the aircraft then the trains.

    Bottom line and it is still under investigation by Southern, there seems to be a total ban on photography at Gatwick on the platforms as it is considered a security risk as the aircraft flight paths are directly over the railway boundary and even photos of trains are limited to being restricted - note the ban "has" been put in place by airport management according to railway staff.
     
  28. jon0844

    jon0844 Veteran Member

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    Maybe ask management for an explanation of how a photo of a plane is a security risk?
     
  29. 455driver

    455driver Veteran Member

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    Just go outside the station onto public land (not the railway carpark etc) and shoot away.
     
  30. Aictos

    Aictos On Moderation

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    Have contacted Southern and Gatwick Airport for a "Please Explain" with tea and biscuits <D

    I would have done but I'm not too familiar with the layout there as I've never been outside said station - last time I stayed in a hotel nearby I got lost trying to find the bus stop for the direct bus to the hotel :(
     

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