The Olympic Stadium in July 2012, alongside an image of the site as it was in November 2006

Picture credits: Dr Patrick Green

Dr Patrick Green first encountered problems in 2007 when he spoke of how two security guards tried to prevent him taking pictures at the northern end of the 2012 Olympic site in east London.

The photographer insisted that he was standing in a public area at all times when he was first challenged while capturing shots of building work on the former Eton Manor sports ground.

The photography enthusiast explained that he was taking the pictures as part of a personal photography project to record the site before building work began. 

Speaking at the time, Dr Green told Amateur Photographer: ‘A security guard came out of the security cabin and called out “this isn’t allowed”. I responded by saying that photography wasn’t illegal and he couldn’t stop me taking pictures.’

Dr Green ran into further difficulty two years later when trying out a new Olympus E-30 DSLR at Dorset Place, E15.

‘The guard saw me and called out that photography was forbidden… I said that I was on public land, could take pictures if I wanted and that this had been confirmed by Olympics bosses in the past.’

A security manager later told Dr Green that he posed a ‘security risk’ because terrorists might use the images to plot an attack if the pictures are posted on the internet.

A spokeswoman for the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) said at the time that it appeared the photographer had been ‘pointing the camera directly at the security operations and security guards’.

The exhibition, Images of the 2012 Olympic Site, will run from 13-30 August at Wanstead Library, Spratt Hall Road, Wanstead, London E11 2RQ.