Ranger in the park

The complained of photograph taken by Robert Beacon at Levengrove today.

By Bill Heaney

Jobsworths. They have always been with us. Sad, power hungry people who want to let the rest of us know they have a job – and that it’s an important one.

You all know the kind of people I am referring to here.

They are the ones who start tutting and frowning when you are caught talking in church.

Or when a baby starts crying.

They are the ones who tell you to take your child off the perimeter wall when you are watching a football match.

The ones who warn you to keep off the grass when you are out for a stroll.

The ones who are forever telling you to “mind your place”.

The “speak when you are spoken to and not before” brigade.

And to get to the back of the queue when seats are being allocated at public events to “important people”.

You find instances of this type of behaviour almost everywhere. It’s not new, but it can be extremely annoying.

Park 2The latest instance to be drawn to my attention concerns a photographer in Levengrove Park today being warned to stop taking photographs.

He was too close to the children’s playground beside the new café, according to a man in a blue anorak.

The man complained to park rangers – they call them community engagement officers these days – who then “lectured” the photographer, who then later posted the photograph above on Facebook.

Robert Beacon asked: “Does anyone recognise anyone in this image?

“I took this from Posties Park today (27/2/2019) [from] over three hundred yards away.

“Work park rangers informed me that a member of the public – they didn’t ask for a name – had complained because there is a play area in the image.

“I explained what I was doing was legal.”

Guidelines for taking photographs in public place are here: https://www.blpawards.org/competition/photo-rights

“However, they insisted I was in the wrong and at one point threatened to call the police.

“They went away and returned with a council member [worker] who backed them up.

“The council member [official] said that she would later be taking images in the park.

“I told her there were a lot of images on Facebook of the park facilities and nobody had complained.

“Beware that taking images of the facilities could you get you – wrongly – lectured.”

Witches Tunnel by Robert Beacon

Photograph of the Witches Tunnel at Garshake on the farm road to the Long Crags. Picture by Robert Beacon

Later, Robert, whose excellent photographs of Levengrove and Dumbarton Rock appear regularly in The Democrat and in Modern Picture of Dumbarton, added: “It was a bit upsetting getting lectured but I kept my cool and the conversation was peaceful.

“The guy in the blue jacket was seen by me talking to the rangers.

“They said that they hadn’t asked for a name. They assumed I was in the wrong.”

George McKenzie asked: “How many people are taking pictures of their kids and others in parks all around the country?

“Some people need to clean out their minds and get a life.”

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