Home is where the heart was.

There’s that old saying about the circle of life, in some ways I understand that a bit better with age. To move forward I realised I needed to undo my past, not other people’s versions of events but actually prod about myself and make things that didn’t make sense become understandable. Since starting this process I think I’ve not only achieved that but also it’s helped me to not just discover who I am but who my family were too. No matter what I discover nothing shocks me, my childhood was like an apprenticeship in hard knocks. Another aspect of this circle of life thing is things change, not just people.

Dagenham….it’s changed more in the last generation than any previous; a quick look at old photos of Dagenham shows that. Pubs that existed before the 1,000s of houses were built now mostly bulldozed or reinvented into fast food shacks etc. Fords no longer dominates Dagenham’s industrial landscape, it’s also slowly vanished from the skyline. Sad.

I’m not suggesting things should stay the same but it is emotive that cornerstones of the community vanish totally.

I need to visit Dagenham, I want to take a film camera and take 36 pictures of places that sum up my home town. I am unsure what these are, also puzzled how I will capture something that is no longer there, a challenge almost, like this book was once.

Will I succeed? I honestly have no idea!

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