Roller Derby

Fast-paced, flat-track action from across the world

Roller Derby

Sports photography is prohibitively expensive and getting into major events can be hit or miss without the right contacts. However, there is a huge amount of grass-roots sports out there, some more mainstream than others, with millions participating, finding a social outlet and a way to keep fit at the same time. I fell into the niche sport of Roller Derby by accident and have seen it grow from its introduction to the UK, through to where it is now, an established, but still a niche sport. Roller Derby isn’t a new game, its roots can be traced back to the 19th century, an endurance race on roller skates, which emerged from the craze of endurance races that swept the world at the time. A promoter just had the idea of putting wheels on the competitors' feet.. Over the years the game has gone through many iterations, dictated by technology, to where it is today.

Photographically it is challenging. Often the only venues available to teams are sports halls that have seen better days. Tungsten or fluorescent lighting add an extra challenge, as well as trying to make a venue look reasonable. However, if you can nail a shot involving fast-paced, random action, in an inadequately lit sports hall, no environment you may encounter will faze you.I have been fortunate to cover four World Cups, major events across Europe and smaller teams within the UK, and have met some great people along the way.

USA take on Australia in the final Team Indigenous, representing tribes across the US prepare for a game

World Cup 2018

USA take on Australia in the final. USA narrowly beat Australia to lift the World Cup for the third time, however teams across the world are catching up with them. www.roller-derby-on-film.co.uk

World Cup 2018

Team Indigenous, representing tribes across the US prepare for a game (left). Canada take on Russia in one of the first round games (right).

Shift Happens book

See the latest book, 'Shift Happens', available to buy now.

England take on Mexico in one of the first round games Roller Derby World Cup Crew

World Cup 2018

England take on Mexico in one of the first round games (left). A Mexican skater before their game (right).

World Cup 2018

Roller Derby World Cup Crew. There have been three World Cups, Toronto, Canada, 2011, Dallas, Texas, 2014 and Manchester, England, 2018. It takes volunteers from across the globe to put on the event.

Roller Derby on Film Zine

Download the free 'Zine' here.

Anarchy is hosted by London Roller Derby at the Crystal Palace leisure centre Refereees, NSOs (Non-Skating Offials) and volunteers with a wide range of skill sets are required to maintain the sport

Anarchy 7

Anarchy is hosted by London Roller Derby at the Crystal Palace leisure centre and attracts the top teams from across Europe. The top teams are now closely matched (left). Stockholm take on Tiger Bay at Anarchy 7

EuroCup

Referees, NSOs (Non-Skating Officials) and volunteers with a wide range of skill sets are required to maintain the sport. There is very little funding so money has to be raised by each team to host events.
The Sheffield Grand Prix was staged around the streets of Sheffield Jack descends a shaft in an abandoned mine/cave system

Sheffield Grand Prix and Rainbow Laces

Roller Derby isn't the only sport I cover. When I am able to access events I am happy to photograph any sport. The Sheffield Grand Prix was staged around the streets of Sheffield (left). Rainbow Laces is an LGBTQ+ charity football match hosted each year in Sheffield (right).

Caving/Abseil

Speleology is one of the few sports I'm prepared to take part in myself. Jack descends a shaft in an abandoned mine/cave system (left). I'm not good with heights so I'll let others go over the top (right).