Post-airshow disaster snap captures national attention

Martin Bloomfield's snap of the Old Toll Bridge gained nationwide exposure and was chosen alongside 25 others in a Radio Four photos of 2015 segment SUS-160401-115400001

Martin Bloomfield's snap of the Old Toll Bridge gained nationwide exposure and was chosen alongside 25 others in a Radio Four photos of 2015 segment SUS-160401-115400001

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A POIGNANT picture of Shoreham’s Old Toll Bridge in the aftermath of the airshow disaster has been selected among the top images of 2015.

Martin Bloomfield’s picture was selected alongside 25 others by BBC Radio Four’s iPM programme in its pictures of 2015 segment.

The striking image, taken at sunrise a week after the Shoreham Airshow tragedy in August, captured the rows of floral tributes left by the community in tribute to the 11 victims.

Mr Bloomfield, 54, of Grinstead Lane, Lancing, said: “I didn’t want to impose on people’s opportunity to reflect, hence my early start in the morning.

“It was a glorious, warm sunrise.”

The bridge became a focal point after the crash, with hundreds visiting to lay tributes.

Mr Bloomfield posted his picture on social media and it soon went viral, generating more than 4,000 ‘likes’ on Facebook. It was shared in excess of 400 times.

He submitted it to the iPM programme after hearing of their request for the best pictures of the year.

An interview with him aired on the show on Saturday.

He said: “I feel very humbled. From an opportunity to take some photographs I am staggered by the reaction.”

Mr Bloomfield, who now runs a photography and digital marketing firm after 26 years’ experience as a police forensic photographer, took the snap with his Nikon D810 DSLR camera.

He blended the same picture at three different exposures together to get the finished article.

He said: “It was a sharp contrast to the whole event, really, because the media focus was on the dramatic photos of the event, so I thought this gave a more balanced reflection of it.”

As well as its exposure on the BBC website and radio programme, copies of the photo were provided to the victims’ families through Sussex Police, as well as being used for a service conducted by West Sussex coroner Penelope Schofield.

Other pictures featured by iPM included one of the Northern Lights, recreations of classic images by pub locals in Hastings and knitted politicians from the general election.

Mr Bloomfield said: “Mine was chosen alongside about 25, so I was quite amazed.

“It is the stories behind the photographs that is quite impactive.”

To listen to the programme featuring Mr Bloomfield’s interview, visit www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b06spm7k

Visit www.bloomfieldigital.co.uk to contact the photographer.