by Gethin Thomas August. 02, 2020 340 views

There is a good story that goes with this photo. It also goes to prove a point of some sort.

I went to photograph the new Library of Birmingham a few years back.

I had already photographed the outside previously but wanted some interior shots. But when I arrived it was closed. Why?

Because it was about to be opened. So it was closed because it was being opened?Officially opened that is.

On 9 October 2012, while on a bus in the Swat District of Pakistan, after taking an exam, a young girl Malala Yousafzai and two other girls were shot by a Pakistani Taliban gunman in an assassination attempt in retaliation for her activism; the gunman fled the scene. Yousafzai was hit in the head with a bullet and remained unconscious and in critical condition at the Rawalpindi Institute of Cardiology, but her condition later improved enough for her to be transferred to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham, UK. The attempt on her life sparked an international outpouring of support for Yousafzai. In 2014, she was the co-recipient of the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize, along with Kailash Satyarthi of India. Aged 17 at the time, she was the youngest-ever Nobel Prize laureate. Yousafzai attended Edgbaston High School in Birmingham from 2013 to 2017.

I didn't know, but the library was being opened by Malala. As a result the world's press were there and a special area for them due to security concerns. As a consequence a mere hobby snapper like me could see nothing.

In front of the building set below ground only thirty feet away was a performance area where I noticed some activity. A brass band was congregating and it looked interesting so I waited while I got the best position for a photo of the band. Although the world's press were there all getting the same photo of Malala, I was as far as I know the only person who got this shot of the performance. A Fanfare written especially for the occasion. I posted the photo on Social Media and thought nothing of it. Within 24 hours the Composer of the piece, an Australian, had contacted me and asked to buy the photo. It's a funny old world. Sometimes it pays to look behind you and when I am out taking photos I always stop from time to time to see what the view is like in the other direction.

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There are 3 comments , add yours!
Tsao T-F 10 months, 2 weeks ago

A good record with impressive images. Well done.

10 months, 2 weeks ago Edited
Antonio Gil 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Congrats Thomas. Love the story too.

10 months, 3 weeks ago Edited
Rachele Schneekloth 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Amazing story. Thanks for sharing this!

10 months, 3 weeks ago Edited