• Roots


    Little London, described as “an estate where deprivation and violence are commonplace,” has been the focus of a lot of attention for its poverty and social problems. Some of these problems are apparent in this portrait series. For example, details such as the black eye, or the walking sticks held by young men, inform us about the subjects (heroin addicts sometimes use walking sticks as they inject between their toes to bury track marks that would be more obvious on their arms). These details give us insight into their lives and suggest the social problems connected with the area.

    However, I did not want to focus on the negative connotations that the area holds. This is because when I visited Little London and spent time getting to know the residents, it was clear that there was a strong sense of community and neighbourly companionship that exists, and this was being broken down by Leeds City Council's attempts to decant inhabitants out of the area and start to gentrify it through private/ public initiatives. On behalf of the residents, I went about creating a series of articles that would communicate the jovial sense of community that I witnessed, as well as the anger felt towards the council’s decisions. However, due to time constraints, I was unable to finish the interviews I was conducting on the issue; therefore this project exists as a series of portraits of the residents of Little London, open to the viewer to make interpretations.