SNUK take part in Worldwide Steelers fans event

We all know about the worldwide support the Steelers have and on Sunday, it was once again confirmed with the enthusiasm for the “Foto Oficial Steelers Fans” album for 2017.

Last June I was contacted by Guillermo Vargas because Zoltan Fizel from Hungary had referred me to him to take part in the photo album. Guillermo suggested our photo be taken in front of Big Ben as it would make a good picture and who can disagree.

We posted the event on our Facebook page and in our SNUK group. All the participating fans around the world were required to take their photos at 10:30 local time on Sunday September 3. Unfortunately those requirements meant a lot of Steeler Nation in the UK were unable to take their place.

On the day I took the first train out of Portsmouth for London as I wanted to check out the potential backdrop. With the restoration work on Big Ben in progress, Clive Trueman had reported that scaffolding was going up at a rapid rate.

It’s unusual for a train to London to be devoid of passengers, but I guess at 06:57 on a Sunday morning, there won’t be many people on the move and so it proved. I tweeted a photo of the empty platform.

After I had satisfied myself that the preparation was the best it could be, I moved to the meeting spot and noticed someone wearing a Steelers top, so guessed he was one of the members attending our event.

Arriving in Westminster an hour before the shoot, the usual vast number of tourists were fortunately missing. Believing there would be no one able to take the photo on our behalf, I put the camera on a tripod and then set it to timer before taking a few test shots.

After I had satisfied myself that the preparation was the best it could be, I moved to the meeting spot and noticed someone wearing a Steelers top, so guessed he was one of the members attending our event.

The person wearing the Steelers shirt was Xavier from our group who I hadn’t met before so it was great for both of us to put a face to our names. Well, maybe not for Xavier meeting the old man.

Peter then turned up and reminisced about a previous event we held in Covent Garden many, many years ago. He reminded me of the time he was in Pittsburgh for a game against the Ravens and didn’t know I was at the same game.

Andy and his daughter Jessica arrived and now we had a quorum so we began to practice with the timer… decided the “You’re in Steelers Country” banner needed to be held up to be seen, so we were almost set.

Then another Andy appeared with his son James also wearing a #7 shirt and wife Jo. While our numbers were now quite reasonable, suddenly, a young lady appeared and inquired what we were up to? Her curiosity had been aroused because she was from Pittsburgh and visiting London and saw these Steelers shirts in Parliament Square. So it was that Gina joined us. All the way from de ‘Burgh to connect with SteelerNationUK in London.

Leaving it to the last minute, Clive breezed in with his wife Mandy. Now I had no need for the timer as Mandy was made the official photographer.

And on the half hour, the photography commenced.

The requirements were for the photo to be uploaded as soon as possible, so I made my way to the nearest McDonalds to use their wi-fi to post a photo. I’m proud to say we were the first group with an uploaded photo and Guillermo was over the moon with the result.

“Gordon my year Gordon, you mates are the first and that photo is STEELERAWESOMELY BEAUTIFUL!!! Steelers Fans In Unity!!! Thank you very much my friend. Here We Go!!!”

Job done well and I thank everyone who turned out and those who said they would if the time had been later so they could have made it. For me it was well worth it, not the effort, but the trauma of getting up so early

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