Cameraman based in Edinburgh, employed by ITN, working for ITV's Good Morning Britain covering stories all over the UK and the world. War Zones, World Cups, Royal Tours and many other less exciting assignments, like interviewing current and ex Prime Ministers have kept me busy over the years working in Breakfast Television since GMTV came on the scene back in '93 and regional TV before that. In 2009 I began to record what it is like to work, the often strange and long hours needed to bring the hard news, human interest and fluffy fun to the UK's TV screens in the morning, mostly broadcasting live.

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Hotel or Prison?

Sunday 27th September

Edinburgh airport was not very busy but the flight to London was.

There were a few well known Labour party faces who were heading for the same destination as me, Brighton and their party conference.

It would be the last one before the next general election.

I was met at Gatwick by a driver with a car big enough for my six big boxes of equipment.

Brighton was bright, sunny and very busy with traffic converging on the conference centre.

There was a bit of a union demo going on as well which did not help with traffic flow.

Some of the Demonstrators on a Sunny Sunday.

A Snapper Doing his Stuff.

I arrived at the hotel not far from the conference venue.

Not too far to walk. Great.

I checked in and was given the key card to my room.

After getting the gear carted up in the tiny slow scruffy lift I opened the door to the room.

There was enough space to squeeze between the bed and the wall, a small wardrobe and a tiny little desk.

There was barely enough room for me on my own never mind six boxes filled with kit that would need to be used in the room, battery charger, editing equipment and a video tape machine.

I turned on my heel and went back to the reception.

I explained that the room was far too small.

They explained that it was the only one that was left.

Kings Hotel Room or is it a Cell.

There was nothing that I could do except try and not need any of the things in the boxes, but I needed to make sure that they were working.

I was just getting things out of the boxes and wishing that the concept of the tardis was real when I got the call to go and do some work.

I met Gloria de Piero at the conference venue and we set about the arduous task we’d been assigned.

She had to ask a few of the people attending the conference what they thought of the contribution Sarah Brown makes in helping Gordon.

It did not take too long.

I gave the tape to David the production manager to send to GMTV in the morning.

My work for the day was done.

That would usually mean a relaxing sleep in a comfy hotel bed.

On this occasion I went back to the cramped, hot noisy room and tried to get some sleep.

The last time I saw inside a prison the cells were bigger but almost as sparse as this room.

I did have my own toilet though and I was not sharing with a psychopath.

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