The homeless photographs featured here came about from my own personal experiences of being a homeless veteran. These were the photographs that got my work noticed.
“In the year 2000, I arrived in London looking for work but knew no one and had nowhere to live, but had a job working as a paparazzo photographing the rich and famous. After around three months of rough sleeping, getting beds in dormitories at back packer hostels I came across a hostel in east London dedicated to people who had served in the armed forces and photographed life inside the hostel. After I got my life together I returned to the hostel to make interviews and portraits of the residents there. A difficult subject matter that from only living this very life could I get access to.”
Paul Sinclair, spent 15 months in the army but was demoted and soon discharged.
“My family did not want to know me,” he says. “When I left the army I had no home, no address and when I left the gates I cried my eyes out.”
After living with his brother, Paul got in touch with an ex-forces charity who found him a room.
James Gallagher, homeless ex soldier, resident of ex forces hostel, photographed in east London, December 2003.
A resident in one of the tiny rooms at the ex forces hostel in east London, November 2001.
A homeless ex-soldier looking out the window of an ex-serviceman’s hostel in East London, 2001.
A resident of the ex forces hostel in east London, sleeps at a table in the ‘communal area’ of the Ex-Forces hostel after a drunken night out. December 2001.
The television room in the ex forces hostel, east London, March 2001.
Ty Gwen, a carehome for traumatised veterans stands abandoned in north Wales, UK.
James Nicholls, homeless ex soldier, resident of ex forces hostel, photographed in east London, December 2003.
more at stuartgriffiths.net