The charm of Peter Robinson’s photography is often the sheer ordinariness of what’s being captured, and he sought out a moment behind the scenes that has now been lost for ever.

HEAD BACK 55 years and the world of football was very different, far more grass roots than big money, particularly in the lower leagues, and hugely approachable in terms of free access for photographers.

As part of his remit from the Football League Magazine for whom he was working, Peter was expected to sniff out quirky behind-the-scenes stories that would make a picture-led read for those interested in the wider world of football. On this occasion he got wind that there was one particular woman whose job it was to wash the Northampton Town kit after every game – the club at that time was in the old Division Three, now League One – and he realised it would make a good piece.

“I used to find leads by visiting clubs and talking to people,” he says. “In this case the original story was a player at the club who had played for 12 different teams over the years, and I went along and set up a picture of him surrounded by shirts from all of his previous clubs. At some point I asked him who was in charge of washing the shirts, and he told me about this lady and it sounded like a good story, particularly when I discovered that she took the kit to her home and washed it there.

“I arranged to visit and the photographs I took of her loading up her washing machine didn’t really work at all. The she took the shirts into the garden to hand them up, and suddenly there was the picture, and I shot it using a 28mm on my Nikon.

“As usual when shooting film I was frugal with my shots. I captured it all in five frames and this was the one that ended up being used in the magazine. It’s the kind of thing that used to happen around smaller football clubs but of course everything has changed beyond recognition these days.”

thesaturdayman.com

Images on The Saturday Man website are scans from original prints or negatives, all prepared and finished using Affinity Photo. It’s Peter’s choice of imaging software, selected due to its intuitive nature, comprehensive tool set, competitive pricing and the fact that it doesn’t require a monthly fee.

Available from affinity.serif.com/en-gb/photo/ price £47.99.

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