The Great Times Media Building Implosion…

Crowds awaiting the big bang.

Or, as it should be more accurately called in my case, The Great Times Media Dust Cloud.

Preparation, of course, is everything, which I should know because as a Boy Cub many years ago we recited weekly the motto the great Baden Powell tried to hammer into our miserable brains; “Be Prepared”.

My first mistake was arriving too late. I wanted to get to the vicinity of the event a good two hours or so before the action in order to scout out a good location from which to photograph proceedings.

But, as I was ensconced in the bedclothes, I kept telling myself I had plenty of time. That’s why I only arrived at 07:35, with not nearly enough time in hand to find a good spot.

If one sneaks a bit further away from the crowds, one can get a better vantage point…as long as security doesn’t spot you.

I decided on this occasion to use the continuous shooting mode on my trusty old Minolta Dynax 7. Naturally, I’ve never used this mode before because I’ve never really needed it. Until the day of the Implosion, of course. So I figured I’d better fire off a few test frames, after all, I didn’t want any nasty surprises at the moment of truth.

I was happy to discover the old Minolta worked perfectly in continuous mode.

All I had to do now, was frame the shot in the viewfinder and wait for the countdown. Maybe I didn’t have the best view, but I had a view I could work with.

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This is the canteen inside the Times Media building, a shot I took on a cell phone some years ago.
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Another interior pic.

Finally, the countdown began. Ten…nine…eight…my finger was ready on the shutter button, and I had a good view through the 300mm telephoto lens…three…two…I began firing – three frames in one second and then…nothing!…two…one…still nothing! Frantically pressing the shutter button. Nothing.

Through the viewfinder I watched in horror as the building broke in half and collapsed. And even though this wasn’t a large building by implosion standards, being only three stories high, it was a truly impressive sight. I only wish I had a picture to show you.

This may well be the last pic ever taken of the Times Media building still standing.

I saw the rising dust cloud. I replaced the “trusty” Minolta with my even trustier Fuji Finepix, took a couple of pics of the dust cloud, and left the scene.

A saying in photography says the pictures you remember the most are the ones you didn’t take. I can certainly relate to that saying.

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Oh, look! Wow, can you see that dust!? No? Perhaps another shot of it might help…
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Hope this helps.

Well, there you have it. As that building collapsed, my life flashed before my eyes. But not my past life. My future life or, more to the point, my immediate future life. Like the great implosion pics I was about to see on the various social media platforms.

I wasn’t disappointed. Ah, well, at least I was there.

©2017. All images copyright and may not be used without my written permission. Please respect the rights of others.


3 thoughts on “The Great Times Media Building Implosion…

  1. Too bad, I would have liked to see it but your description is good. True to form, it always pays to have a back up camera. Visa vie the age of the building, this is what I don’t understand. Companies pay loads of money o put up a building and then with in 2-3 years they are tearing it down and putting up something bigger but definitely more inferiorly built, which definitely won’t last – to be another eyesore. One of the aspects of these beautifully built old buildings, they stand neglect better than their modern counterparts.

  2. Dam! Sorry you missed your shots! Reminds me of the implosion of the twin smoke stacks at the Escom power station in the EL Harbour where my dad used to work. Early 1990’s i think. No camera, all in my memory! Something you never forget. One moment they’re there, then the collapsing, like wobbly jelly, then billows of smoke and gone!

    1. Yep, Barbara – years to build, a few seconds to knock it down (of course this doesn’t take into account the careful planning and placing of explosives that goes into a demolition like this). But maybe it’s easier than watching a wrecking ball tearing the building apart piece by painful piece. The funny thing is, this is not even a particularly old building.

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