MeetUp Barbican photo walk

Saturday 11 March 2023 – Barbican, London.

We’ve been back from the sabbatical in New Zealand for just over a year, and the year seems to have completely disappeared. I haven’t shared a lot of news over that time, in some ways it felt like not much happened that was worth reporting; however, when I put everything down on ‘paper’ it was a very busy time indeed. In no particular order we’ve;

· Both had at least one (thankfully) mildish dose of Covid.
· Eleanor sold her house of 26 years in Walthamstow and bought another one in Leytonstone.
· We’re in the middle of having the kitchen replaced and have been microwaving and air-frying dinner in the sitting room and washing dishes in the bathroom for the last three weeks.
· There has been a lot of work being done on the building my flat is in and as director of the residents association it was a very busy, and stressful time.
· I’m trying to rent my flat so I can save some money when my mortgage goes up in June.
· I’ve got a new job that I start in May.
· Eleanor’s one year contract has been made a permanent position.
· I turned 60, (sad-face).
· We’ve taken two short and enjoyable breaks in Europe.

We want to do more of the European thing; and if I can rent the flat and save some money then European holidays will be definitely be on the plan over summer.

In the meantime, other than being busy with house related things and going to concerts I’ve been trying to beat my lethargy and get out and do more photography. I’m also keen to meet some new people and expand my friendship group a bit beyond the group we mainly hang out with now.

With those things in mind I signed up for a MeetUp Photography walk in the Barbican, which I think is one of the best places for brutalist architectural photography in London. I was hoping to be shown some new spots to take photos and had my fingers crossed I would meet some other photographers interested in walking round taking photos of buildings and things while not talking about camera kit as we go. I’m not that sort of photographer; I like the exploring and act of taking photos rather than all the technology that goes with it.

The Barbican Estate was constructed between 1965 and 1976 and comprises of some 2,000 flats and houses across three towers and some low level blocks. There is also the Barbican Centre mixed usage venue which has a fabulous mid-century interior. I’m planning on going back just to take some photos of the interior, a lot earlier in the day.


The whole thing is comprised of lovely concrete and to my constant surprise is mostly open to the public and the security guards don’t stop people taking photos. I hope this never changes.


It was an enjoyable three hour session, there were about a dozen of us photographers led by Alex from the London Centre for Photography who shared a few ideas and things to look out for to make the most of the environment we were in. We had 20 minute sessions across a number of zones in the Barbican precinct and I was shown couple of places I hadn’t been to before. Objective one met. I can’t believe I missed this place before.


While objective two was to meet more photographers I pretty much spent the three hours shooting on my own, which is I must confess, absolutely my preference. I chatted to people when we all got together between assignments and I did share Instagram names with a couple of people, one who I got on well with and had similar photographic inspirations to me. The rest of the group were really nice, but I didn’t specifically click with anyone. I will do one of these again though as it was fun and interesting and most of the things I wanted from the day.


After the session ended I went off with a couple of photographers to a nearby parking area to take these two images. we were so lucky this taxi was there and the driver was more than happy to move and stop under the light well. This is my favourite from the day.



I was really pleased with my photography though, liking most of the images I took. I am a fairly selective photographer and tend to shoot like I was still using film and rarely taking more than one photo of any given subject. I have been very happy with the standard of photo I’ve been taking lately and I take that as a good thing.

Here are the rest of the images I took. I’ve converted most to black and white as that format perfectly suits 60s and 70s architecture. 

























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Wannabe writer and photographer. Interested in travel and place. From Auckland, New Zealand.