Hayley Sargent

"I had been around the square mile on a previous shoot and had noticed the amount of litter and rubbish left behind polluting a recreational ground. You don't notice until you actually look at the land within the city the way it has been treated. On the second outing which is where the images in the slide-show came from, the sense of abandonment was apparent. Things from bottles to toilets to road signs were left behind and burnt. In such a small piece of land I couldn't believe the way it had been abused. Bradford has produced this reputation of being rough and unfriendly but in the area we were given it was so quiet and the locals were so helpful and approachable. This piece of land wasn't busy and bustling with chavs setting fire to sofas and drinking white lightning. It was the morning after, it felt abandoned, forgotten, ghostly and eerie. You could get quite political and say well it's because kids have nothing else to do so they take to the streets and commit crimes. But being around that age where my generation is blamed and also excused for their unforgivable behavior I just feel like their respect for the community has gone. You walk down the streets of Bradford and it can be 1 o'clock in the afternoon and a group of young men will start beating up an old man and you have to stop and think is this excusable? They know its wrong but also know they can get away with it because our society is so afraid of the younger generations they become bullies. Shouldn't it be common courtesy not to attack someone on the street or pollute the environment and leave their stamp of ingratitude and lack of connection to nature? I don't commit these crimes so its inexcusable for someone of my age or older to do so. Why should people destroy the community and knock it down and ruin it for people who have lived here for generations? Being a photographer helps you see the world for what it is and it can be quite disheartening. Bradford has always struggled to gain any appreciation but I guess its quite hard when a few bad apples spoil the barrel. I know my words seem harsh but the images are representing what I have spoken about but also looking it in a beautiful way. Looking at the delicacy and the vulnerability of nature in relation to human's harsh stamp on it."

- Hayley Sargent