A Roll of Black & White Film, a Little Pink Camera and a Load of Memories

Seánie Broderick (left) with Mikey ‘Ikey’ McSweeney, Bob Begley and Paul Reese posing on the street in early 1998. Photograph: John Reidy

Once upon a time – in the winter / spring of 1997 /’98 in fact – Sheila Prendiville chanced putting a roll of black and white film in her little compact, fixed lens, pink camera.

The film survived the Christmas period without a mark on it but it was put to work early in the new year.

I had no hand, act or part in the chosing of the film but it fell to me to develop it one evening when the final frame was exposed and rewound and we discovered that it was in fact of the monochrome variety.

Set of Prints

I did and made a set of prints and found myself among the photographed.

It all rested there until earlier this week when ‘going through’ stuff I rediscovered the envelope marked ‘Sheila Prendiville’s Camera Winter Spring 1998.’

So I put the negatives through there paces again and here’s the result.

Open Access to the Camera

Almost everyone who came into the bar had access to the camera if no other could be found so the photographs could have been taken by anyone – and they usually were.

I do remember taking the one of Paddy Maher and the Coffey and O’Brien cousins on Herlihy’s window. Take a look back at a period of time and at another premises silenced of all its laughter and music and song by the unrelenting march of progress.

But, as Paul Brady sang: ‘This wasn’t meant to be no sad song.’