So it’s all over and normality has returned. Well normality might have returned if the leaders of three of the political parties hadn’t all resigned the morning after the count. Or if the Lib Dems hadn’t taken such a thrashing or if Labour hadn’t done pretty badly across a lot of the country or if the Conservatives hadn’t managed to defy all the odds as well as the poll forecasts and actually secure a majority victory. But yeah, apart from that normality has returned.
The election rhetoric and the speeches, the promises, the declarations, the endless sound bytes, the tit-for-tat argumentative blame game, the TV debates or non-debates, the celebrity endorsements, the canvassing, the bus tours, the scripted walkabouts, the ice-cream-eating-baby-hugging-school-visiting, the big buses, the pink buses, the frenzied clamour of the election machine may have ground to a halt, spluttered a little and then fallen silent but this election story is far from over.
The day when your door mat looked like a dumping ground for a colourful selection of wanted posters that stared up at you as you walked past may have passed but there is still a little way to run with this one. So once again we trust ourselves, willingly or otherwise, happily or reluctantly, eagerly or indifferently into the hands of the political leaders and jump, are dragged or are pushed onto the roundabout. So enjoy the ride. Wherever it may lead.
I began my #Grassroots photographic election coverage way back in February! Joining the Labour candidate for Redcar Anna Turley on a wet, cold and slushy door-knocking trip around Eston. Since then I’ve been to Dormanstown with Labour’s Dan Jarvis, attended the UKIP north east conference in Hartlepool. I visited a factory with Ed Balls and I’ve spent a whole day shooting in Horden and meeting some of the great people who live there before attending a UKIP public meeting in the town later in the evening. I walked around Redcar with Liz Kendall and went leaflet dropping with Chris Gallacher from UKIP in Coatham.
I photographed Ed Miliband on a visit to Redcar and went to the Stockton South constituency with Emma Reynolds and Louise Baldock. I went over to Sedgefield to take pictures of Tony and Cherie Blair at a train factory before climbing aboard ‘The Pink Bus’ with Harriet Harman. Then I went on a trip to Eaglescliffe for a visit by David Cameron and what had to have been the shortest factory tour of all time! I took pictures of Ed Balls eating an ice cream – the first of the election. I headed over to Dormanstown to shoot Hilary Benn as he walked around a garden and joined David Blunkett in Redcar town centre.
Staying in Redcar the soap actors were brought in by Labour to show support for the campaign and I spent one morning with David Neilson (aka Roy Cropper from Corrie!) as he visited the town. I met up with Justine Thornton, wife of Ed Miliband as she visited Thornaby and then a couple of days later Nigel Farage made a speech at the grand Hotel in Hartlepool. Things livened up a little after that as John Prescott visited a boxing club and climbed into the ring for a bit of sparring with a Channel 4 journalist.
Then I rolled into the polling day coverage on May 7 before later spending a long and sleepless night covering the Sunderland and then the Redcar counts as they took place.
So there we are, my election coverage has, for now anyway, come to an end so below I’ve put together a round up of some of my favourite pictures from those jobs and included some of the cuttings that were used as a result. There are also links to all my other #Grassroots blog posts at the bottom of the post.
Below are some of the pictures that I’ve managed to find which featured in print and online with publications such as The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Times, The Sunday Times, The Sun, The Irish Times, The Daily Mail, Sky News, BBC News, Daily Express, New Statesman, The Daily Mirror, London 24, Metro, New York Times, abc News, Illinois News…
Click on the links below to see more in the #Grassroots series…
See more of my work on my website and blogs via the link…. HERE
Images remain copyright Ian Forsyth / Getty Images
No usage without arrangement