Art, Birmingham, blog, Blog post, Documentary, Early work, Editorial, PDBarton, photography, Photojournalism, Pictures, Portraits, post, Street Picture
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Skin Heads. Birmingham, ’70’s/’80’s

Recently, I was trying to decide on a picture to put in place at home. Knowing Sue, my wife likes this image I decided on this.

It was taken at Cannon Hill Park, Birmingham in the late ’70s, maybe very early ’80s. It shows two of a group of Skin Heads standing on the Waltzers, a fairground ride at the ‘Tulip Festival’.  Both are wearing tight Levi jeans and ‘Doc Marten’ boots, one with a ‘Ben Sherman’ check shirt and with a ‘Crombie style’ overcoat over. And each, of course with the required shaved head haircut,

Various pins and badges are worn on the lapels, one being a Nazi Swastika. On occasion, wrongly I’ve printed it without the badge. I print it here without any editing – as I believe it should be.
The image portrayed by the skinheads is underlined by the “Love and Hate” tattoo across the knuckles of each hand further enhancing the anarchic, hard man ‘Fuck you’  image they choose to put out.

It is a picture of its time reflecting, as it does on the tribal and cultural mores of the era.

I only wish I had taken more at the time, but, as Tony Kubiak, a photographer friend of mine at the time said…

” It doesn’t matter if you don’t catch an image on camera. You SAW it in your mind’s eye, and that’s what matters”.


Lincoln, 2019.


  1. Brilliant image!
    Yeah, who doesn’t remember the Skins?

    I was a twelve year old living in Chester ( I now live in Johannesburg) when skinheads were popular. Or should that rather be infamous?
    Football hooligans, Millwall FC, The Shed (Stamford Bridge) etc.
    I remember as a kid reading a novel called Skinhead every morning for a fortnight while waiting to go out on my paper round as the bloke in the newsagents filled my paper-bag.


  2. PDBarton says

    Thanks for your kind comment. It’s my daughters favourite print of mine.
    I wish I could get back to that simplicity in my work, but I was younger then 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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