There’s something beautiful about the way time weathers the physical. Perhaps that’s why older people are often more photogenic than their younger counterparts. Age brings with it majesty, and we learn so much from the noble lines and cracks that come with time. Many such images often challenge our conventional notions of what is considered beautiful. That’s a good thing.
When it comes to architecture, I personally can’t resist the allure of dereliction. It always inspires. One such amazing example sits in the shadow of a towering power station on the Vale of Glamorgan coastline. Built in 1925 as a holiday camp for the sons of South Wales coal miners, the Boys Village has long fallen into disrepair. Its’ decline has been ongoing for decades, but since 2008 it’s been vandalised, burnt, pillaged and subsequently the backdrop for a few music promos as well.
Now all that remains from it’s chequered past are exposed bricks, scorched frames, broken slates and the distant echo of lads laughter. Rather than being depressed by this delapidation I’m moved. For me it’s a timely reminder that even when things fall apart, they can be even more beautiful than they were in very the beginning.
It’s a reminder that when you’re creating anything, it’s always fruitful to consider the ugly, the decayed and the ruined, as well as the beautiful. Deterioration is often far more interesting. I’ve included a few of my stills taken at this evocative place. Please rejoice in the abandon.