Thursday, June 9, 2011

A bit of black and white ...

I've been looking through some old photographs ... well, not that old really, just a few months old.  The shot you see in this post brought back quite a few memories.  It was taken last year whilst visiting the UK.  I'd been walking around Westhoughton and spent a bit of time in the graveyard and this particular monument caught my eye.  The light was quite pleasant, but I was shooting into the sun.  As such I tried a bracketed set of shots and combined them into an HDR shot with Photomatix Pro.

The memorial is for the 344 men and boys who lost their lives in the Pretoria Pit as a result of an explosion.  This tragedy is Britain's third largest loss of life from a single mining event.  The explosion occurred at 7.50am on a Wednesday morning and took everyone by surprise.  There's a quote at the foot of the inscription on the memorial which says,

"Be ye therefore ready also, for the Son of Man cometh at an hour when ye think not"
 Luke 12. v40

Quite a fitting quotation I thought.

I must admit to being quite stunned by the magnitude of this event.  Westhoughton is much larger now than it was back in 1910 and 344 deaths would have a big impact on today's town ... it's hard to imagine what effect this event had back in 1910.

Interesting what you can find if you look in old graveyards, and how thought provoking some of those finds can be.

1 comment:

  1. I stumbled across your photo while searching for images relating to my family history. My grandfather's uncle was killed in the Pretoria Pit explosion and I've photographed this monument myself for my records (but not with the great results you've achieved). I've enjoyed browsing through some of your other excellent photos too. Thanks.