Belfast Community Life in Lockdown

Book Fairies – Hold Still – 7th May 2021

I am joining The Book Fairies and hiding a copy of the beautiful book Hold Still, published by the National Portrait Gallery! One of my photographs is featured in the collection! The Book Fairies and contributors to the collection are leaving books at places that gave them hope during the lockdown. Whoever finds a copy will discover beautiful images from all around the UK, which reflect the experience of lockdown across many communities. 

About the book:

Spearheaded by The Duchess of Cambridge, Patron of the National Portrait Gallery, Hold Still was an ambitious community project to create a unique collective portrait of the UK during the lockdown. People of all ages were invited to submit a photographic portrait, taken in a six-week period during May and June 2020, focusing on three core themes – Helpers and Heroes, Your New Normal, and Acts of Kindness. From these, a panel of judges selected 100 portraits, assessing the images on the emotions and experiences they conveyed.

Featured here in this publication, the final 100 images present a unique and highly personal record of this extraordinary period in our history of people of all ages from across the nation. From virtual birthday parties, handmade rainbows, and community clapping to brave NHS staff, resilient keyworkers, and people dealing with illness, isolation, and loss. The images convey humour and grief, creativity and kindness, tragedy and hope – expressing and exploring both our shared and individual experiences. Presenting a true portrait of our nation in 2020, this publication includes a foreword by The Duchess of Cambridge, each image is accompanied by the story behind the picture told through the words of the entrants, and further works show the nationwide outdoor exhibition of Hold Still.

 #ibelieveinbookfairies #HSBookFairies #HoldStill

 — Tags to add for social media:

 Hashtags across all social: #HSBookFairies #ibelieveInbookfairies #HoldStill2020

 Insta: @NationalPortraitGallery @bookfairiesworldwide @bookfairies_uk @dukeandduchessofcambridge @TheRoyalFamily

 Twitter: @NPGLondon @the_bookfairies @KensingtonRoyal @RoyalFamily

 Facebook: @bookfairiesworldwide @theroyalfamily 

Holidays Life in Lockdown

Neptune’s Lockdown Christmas

This sparkling bauble on the tree

Will hold a special memory for me

Our Special Olympics Swimming Club

The parents and athletes meeting hub

Had to close its doors for a while

As Lockdown took away our smile!

However, the Athletes brought much cheer

As they supported each other throughout the year

John and all our Athletes will agree

This bauble is perfect for the Christmas tree!

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to ALL!

Neptune’s SOC is an affiliated club within Special Olympics Ireland (Ulster Region). The club was established in July 2012 by a group Special Olympics Volunteers who came together to start a new swimming club in Belfast to provide a year round programme of sports training and competition for children and adults with a learning disability regardless of their abilities.

Life in Lockdown

Clapping together for the NHS

I took this photo of my next door neighbours, Gladys and Jack. Jack is in his 90s and they both came out every Thursday to clap for the NHS. They are an inspirational couple and still very much in love. They encouraged others to come out and clap and waved to everyone in the street. They are lovely neighbours to have and I am lucky to live next door.

I entered the photo for the Hold Still photo project run by the Duchess of Cambridge and my photo was chosen as one of the 100 final portraits selected by a panel of judges.

Clapping together for the NHS

Life in Lockdown

Stay at home, protect the NHS, save Lives

Tricia lock
Clerical officer, erasmus, study abroad

They were all doing it, I could hear them!

The sound of lawn mowers, usually comes with the warmer weather, the sun high in the sky, no clouds, a fresh breeze and the continuous sound of grass being cut.  

So we were all told to stay at home, then we were told to be careful with D.I.Y.  Don’t be doing anything dangerous and causing accidents, this usually happens when people who have been cocooned all winter get let out into their gardens for some D.I.Y and grass cutting.  Well surely cutting grass would be safe, the sound of it happening in neighbouring gardens had me contemplating my own overgrown jungle.  Neighbours had a way of letting you know when it was your turn, the odd comment or do you need to borrow mine hint can sometimes do it.  We’d become very neighbourly in these last few weeks of confinement.  Clapping on a Thursday outside our doors, strange as it seemed was empowering although slightly bewildering as some never spoke a word in years to each other, but here we were clapping into the evening air for the NHS.   Clapping seemed an odd way to thank them.  So my contribution of not doing anything dangerous was suddenly thrown into chaos when my lawn mower took a mind of its own and went out of control.

It was another lovely evening and the urge to cut my grass became overpowering and I quickly set up the machine all with the safety switch to the ready, and proceeded to cut said grass!

Wo Ho! Look at me neighbours- out in garden cutting grass to desired level of acceptable proportions for suburban living – Wo ho! Off we go! Hold on! What is happening – lawn mower has decided to move faster than me – it has now taken off!!! But I am still holding the handle which is now NOT attached to the mower – oh no! This can’t be happening – flashes of ambulances, and pointed fingers are before me – how can I stop this mower from causing a disaster – luckily for me, the safety switch was on. I managed to stop the lawn mower in its track. It had headed for the only decent plant in the garden.  Quickly I looked to see if anyone saw the comedy of errors acting out in my garden.  No one around! Good. So I quickly took the electric lawn mower and put it back in the garage.  Garden looked like a teenager with a bad haircut!  A few passer-by’s nodded and looked slightly unsure of garden design, so I really needed to sort it out!

As I sipped my glass of prosecco that night, I was really glad I had managed to save the day and the garden with my trusted manual mower.  Yes it took several hours and lots of walking up and down, and accepting smirks from passers-by and blind moving window watchers, but the grass was safely cut!  

And I stayed safe also. Thank you NHS