I can’t remember when I first met and photographed Jeremy Corbyn, but it was probably in the early 1990s, though I might have seen him speaking from a distance at earlier events. It’s only easy to search my pictures since I started covering events with a digital camera – and here he is in 2004 in a protest against the torture of Iraqis by US troops:

And another from 2004, compering London’s annual Hiroshima Day event in Tavistock Square in August:

He spoke too in May 2005, supporting Palestine, when I commented “Jeremy Corbyn, not so happy to be missing the football as his local team were winning the cup, is another fine speaker.”

In November 2004 he was at Kings Cross at an event remembering the tragic fire there, and calling like the other speakers for proper safety procedures – which as I wrote “are particularly vital when as well as accidental disasters such as the king’s cross fire, the safety of the system is also threatened by deliberate terrorist attacks.”

These pictures are from my early days working with digital, and I’m sure I would now make them look better if I had time to go back and re-process them from the raw files. I was disappointed with Adobe when they bought out a technically superior product, which I still had but no longer worked with a new camera, and brought out Lightroom (though they did give us a free copy of the new software) but many versions later it has become considerably more powerful.

I’ve photographed Corbyn many times since then – and this is just one of many pictures from last year, with John McDonnell taking a picture for a supporter who is standing with him. But since he became Labour leader it has been rare to be able to do so without a scrum of other photographers pushing and elbowing to get a picture – and often I’ve just not bothered. And while in the past he always had time to stop for at least a quick word, now he gets rushed away by aides.

As well as taking pictures I’ve also listened to him speaking on many occasions, public and private and have always been impressed (even if I haven’t always agreed.) I’ve no idea how today’s vote will go but if he gets elected I’m sure he will go down in history as a worthy successor to the likes of Atlee, arguably the best prime minister of the last century. And the argument that he would oversee a worse job of negotiating over Brexit than Theresa May is frankly one that only billionaire newspaper owners can take seriously. If you have huge amounts in overseas tax havens it will be in your interest to get out today and vote Conservative. Otherwise I think it’s time for a change and I hope enough people agree with me to get it today.


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My London Diary : Buildings of London : River Lea/Lee Valley : London’s Industrial Heritage

All photographs on this and my other sites, unless otherwise stated, are taken by and copyright of Peter Marshall, and are available for reproduction or can be bought as prints.

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