Creative Soccer Culture

113 Years - Upton Park by Marcus Drinkwater

A powerful piece of visual story telling, Marcus Drinkwater's project 112 years captured the essense of West Ham United as they made waves in moving out of the famous Boleyn Ground. Following up, a year on, '113 Years' goes the distance once more in remembering what made this place of pilgrimage such a cultural icon.

'112 Years' was a vivid and colourful personification of West Ham United. A club so central to the East End of London, this follow up packs a serious punch and will leave a lump in the throat. A football ground for sure, though a palace of memories and magic with our beautiful game running throughout, the doors are closed and the club has embraced a fresh chapter. Bottling the moments as we move on however, this is a perfect way to once more revisit the energy and embrace what football is truly about - community.

Commenting on the body of work, Marcus explains, "Following my work on the community around Upton Park during the clubs last season there for 112 Years I was compelled to see the result of such a big change in the area. I wanted to see how the local businesses would cope with such a loss of income and what cultural impact this would have on the area."

Some description

"Now the stadium is halfway through demolition and the songs are no longer being sung in Upton Park many businesses are feeling the strain already. West Hams decision to up sticks and move over three miles west has left a big hole in the community, a hole being filled with 842 “luxury dwellings”. The flats are estimated to be completed by 2022 so it could be a little too late for the local business owners in the area with no help of any kind from Newham council."

"In a way the story of Upton Park is the story of London today, profits overshadow people and property developers are shaping our city. Another one of London’s iconic areas is being gentrified and local people, for now, will have to learn to adapt regardless of the loss of income and loss of community."

You can see more work from Marcus here.


The Creative Soccer Culture Brief

Sign up to our newsletter and we'll keep you in the loop with everything good going on in the world of Creative Soccer Culture.