Saturday, 11 February 2012

Princess Anne & Stroud's New Bridge

Princess Anne visited Stroud yesterday, Friday 10 February 2012, to officially open the new Stroud Brewery Bridge with a ribbon cutting. Also to visit the Cotstwold Canals Trust Visitors Centre and the new Lock Keeper's Café. I almost missed it as I was busy working and sorting out a shoot for the same day, but just as soon as I had a break and realized that I had just enough time to run down and snap a few pics I shot out the door like a flash.

A friend of mine, Mr. Marcus Green,  had tried to contact me to give me a heads up about the goings on so I went hunting for him as soon as I got there. Found him and another friend Gill from Stroud People just across the canal watching the proceedings on the other side, so I joined them. And who do we see across the way but our friend Carl from the Stroud News and Journal! No surprise there really, he's often working at these types of events. I have loads of photos of Carl that I've taken over the years of him mostly working at events which I've never published. If I ever do publish them it will make it look like I stalk the poor guy!  Honest I don't, he's just always there so I shoot him. ;-)

Carl Hewlett from the Stroud News and Journal
I don't know many people in these photos so I can't name them. If you know the names of anyone in the photos please leave a note below or email me and I'll add their names. I do know that in the above photo that the gentleman on the right is Stroud's Mayor, John Marjoram. He recently went to court over his refusal to fill out a mandatory census. I don't know the details, I don't keep up with these things.

I love capturing photos like the one above, they amuse me. :-)

Wendy Townsend (Lady with big grin) Owner of The Lock Keeper's Café
Wendy, in the above photo, owns and runs The Lock Keeper's Café on the left. Some small local businesses who mainly work from home often meet here on a Friday for the Friday Forum. This day's meet was canceled because the café had been privately hired for today's events. Quite an exciting event for Wendy and I'm happy for her. Wish I could have been inside to capture the visitors inside, one of whom was Princess Anne.

Important people
Man with chain of office on is Cllr John Hudson, Leader Stroud District Council
I don't know how long they were inside and I don't know what they were doing in there, though I suspect enjoying a cup of tea or coffee and one of Wendy's lovely cakes.

More important people
Front on steps Mr Mark Hayward FRICS, High Sheriff of Gloucestershire
Next to him Neil Carmichael MP
behind him David Hagg, Chief Executive Stroud District Council
There was quite a few people inside and when they started pouring out we remarked at how many people were inside this small Café. It was like watching a hoard of clowns climbing out of a small car. Where were they all coming from and how did they all get in there? :-D

Some more important people
Cllr Brian Thornton, Chairman Of Gloucestershire County Council
I'm ashamed to say that I don't know who all these people are, they sure do look important, and I'm sure most people that were there knew who they were. If you do know and you'd like to help me out, please let me know below or drop me an email.

Amusing capture
The moment captured above is another one of those moments that just amuses me. I think we need to have a caption contest with this one. If you'd like to add your caption to this photo please do so in the comment section below. Maybe I'll start a flicr or facebook or forum post so that people can add their own captions. :-)

Princess Anne
HRH The Princess Royal with Cllr Keith Pearson
The moment we've all been waiting for! HRH The Princess Royal (Princess Anne) to come out and unveil the new Stroud Brewery Bridge plaque.

Close up of HRH The Princess Royal

HRH The Princess Royal unveils the new Plaque for the new Stroud Brewery Bridge 
Too bad they didn't put the valance high enough for us to read the top of the plaque.

HRH The Princess Royal give a little speech

HRH The Princess Royal on the Cotsowld Canal boat
After the plaque unveiling Princess Anne and a number of important looking people boarded the Cotswold Canls Trust's canal boat, the Perseverance.

Opening the new lock gates
Recently this bit of the canal has had a revamp and repair, including the locks. This is the first time I've seen this section of the lock full of water and used. In the above photo the lock is just being opened a bit to let the water drain out so that the boat can be lowered down to the level of the next part of the canal.

Waiting for the water level to drop so that they can continue their journey along the canal

Photographers everywhere! (Marcus Green above)

Lock gates opening to let the Canal Boat through
As you can see in these photos quite a few people showed up for the official opening of the canal bridge. I'm sure quite a few came just to see Princess Anne as well.

Princess Anne going under the bridge

HRH The Princess Royal waves to the crowd

HRH The Princess Royal cuts the ribbon officially opening the new Stroud Brewery Bridge
I did quite a bit of running around to get photos from many different angles and vantage points. Loads of fun, I really enjoying covering events like this.

In this photo, Gill and Carl 
In the above photo people have gathered to greet HRH The Princess Royal disembarking from the canal boat. I see two of my friends in the crowd, both of whom are covering the event professionally. 

HRH The Princess Royal greeting the crowd and receiving flowers
As soon as Princess Anne left I had to leave too, as I had a job to get to. I was off to Fairford to shoot three wise men, some Shepherds and famous little baby.  Another very busy day for me! I had the best time though, I love it! :-D I did hate missing out on a coffee and a natter with my friends though. That bit sucked. Next time. ;-)

Photography Information: All photos above were taken with a Canon 5D II and a Canon 70-200 f2.8 lens. Various camera settings were used. Mostly I shot in AV mode watching my shutter speed. If my shutter speed dropped below 1/200th of a second I'd raise my ISO setting. I was pushing the aperture up and down. Mostly shot around f2.8 I think. 

Why do I always tell you which camera when it's always the same camera? Well I do have other cameras, and I do sometimes use them. I've just mostly been using the 5D lately. :-) 

Here are the links to Gill's photos of this event on the Stroud People website:
(If you look carefully you can spot me in the background of several of Gill's photos)

Princess Royal Opens Stroud Brewery Bridge (the build up)

Here are a couple of photos that Marcus took of me during this event. I hope he doesn't mind me sharing them, after all I'm brave enough to show everyone! Not his fault I'm not young, fit and gorgeous. ;-)

When did I get to be so old?!!! 

That's me on the far left and Princess Anne on the right in the red scarf. Just in case you couldn't tell us apart. 
Thank you Marcus!

A big thank you to Marcus Green for taking the time to list the names of the important people in the images above.

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