Posts Tagged ‘gold’

Livingstone

Sunday, May 12th, 2019

Bank of England return Venezuela’s Gold

I’ve several times been interviewed by journalists who have asked to name my most important photographic accessory and my answers have varied according to mood and the kind of photographs we are talking about. A good pair of shoes is one of my favourites, but the thing that really made much of my photograph of London possible was the Travelcard, introduced when Ken Livingstone was in charge of the Greater London Council before Mrs Thatcher put London Government back thirty years in a fit of pique by abolishing the GLC and selling off its building.

The picture above was taken a few days before the election when he knew from the opinion polls he was almost certain to lose to Boris Johnson. I’d photographed him speaking at an event and we just happened to catch the same train. Just after I took this picture, several people came and asked if they could take ‘selfies’ with him, and he smiled at them and told them of course they could.

I’ve always been impressed when I’ve watched Ken talking to strangers. Here’s a picture from a few years earlier with him holding an umbrella in an April shower as he shares a moment with a well-wisher at an event at Gabriel’s wharf, Southwark.

Again a few days before he lost the election, here he is with George Galloway who also spoke at an event in Altab Ali Park in Whitechapel.

As Mayor of London in 2002 he bgan the official celebrations of St Patrick’s Day and I photographed him five years later at the event.

Ken did a great deal fro gay rights and also for all of London’s ethnic minorities. Here he is marching at Pride with Peter Tatchell in 2011 three years after losing the mayoral election; security let photographers approach the marchers for a few seconds and I made this picture.

Ken Livingstone was certainly the most interesting of the speakers at the protest outside the Bank of England calling on it to return the 14 tons of Venezuelan gold to the Venezuelan government of President Maduro.  He recalled the visit to London of Hugo Chávez, and how money from Venezuela’s state oil company enabled him to give half price bus fares to lone parents and sick and disabled Londoners in return for teaching planning and traffic management skills to Venezuelan officials.

More at Bank of England return Venezuela’s Goldhttp://mylondondiary.co.uk/2019/02/feb.htm#gold


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