Photographer vs Golden Wonder Security

A UK photographer who goes by the moniker Hamstify was documenting his town Scunthorpe late last year when he was confronted by security personel outside a Golden Wonder plant and ordered to stop photographing. He was shooting from a public location, so he decided to stand up for his rights and film the argument that transpired. On, he writes,

What also aggrieves me is that someone in a uniform representing a company in an apparent position of authority can try and intimidate members of the public by making up laws that don’t exist. This seemed to be an attempt to subjugate a member of the public into accepting what was being told was to be true. Further more hurling offensive insults and puerile slander, like seen at the end of the video, surely isn’t something that someone in that position should resort to.

In general, for UK residents, photography from public places is perfectly legal. There are some exceptions (e.g. buildings critical to national security), but the general rule of thumb is that if you’re shooting from public property police and security guards don’t have the power to stop you.

  • AdrieWG

    Well done Photog! 

  • David G. Paul

    I couldn’t help but laugh – but it’s terrible that they think they can get away with that.

  • Sazzab

    Bloody hell it is getting worse and worse for anyone wanting to take photos. Well done you for standing your ground and not being offensive (cannot say the same for the shameful security staff there though!). I thought you handled that perfectly. You are a credit to photographers everywhere and for all of us trying to fight this ridiculous rise of security (and police) who think by saying ‘it’s the law’ that that will automatically make it the law. It doesn’t. Hopefully they will start to realise that and at the same time realise that 99.9999% of people taking photos are doing it for perfectly innocent and reasonable reasons. 

  • MonochromeEye

    Great job! BTW what is Golden Wonder?

  • Ed

    This issue comes up so often I’m starting to get deja vu. When will these idiots ever learn? Stick someone in a uniform and they suddenly seem to have the ability to make up laws on the spot.

    It’s a bit worrying how some of the commenters on YouTube seemed to think the “guards” were within their rights, but the again, they are commenters on YouTube…

  • Anonymous

    Haha.  Golden Wonder is crisps (potato chips to you American folks)….  

  • will mcconnell

    They make potato chips!

  • Anonymous

    I thought I was watching a Monty Python skit for a minute there…

  • Travis

    I’d say everybody should do an occupy your nearest snack factory movement, but I have a feeling that may not work out too well.

  • Mike Heller

    So funny, thanks for sharing the video.  Love it when the Brits go off on each other, classic stuff.   You gonna shift?

  • ISO 1200 Magazine

    You have another great example here:London Street Photography On Tuesday 21 June 2011 six photographers were assigned different areas of the City to photograph. Some used tripods, some went hand held, one set up a 5 x 4. All six photographers were stopped on at least one occasion. Three encounters led to police intervention.|

  • Dave P.

    Sorry Mike, but it’s really not funny! It’s time these people started losing their jobs over this outrageous behaviour.

  • Fotographix

    I just like the way she said “photos”. Too funny.

  • Anonymous

    Give someone a high viz jacket and they think they’re robo cop

  • Anonymous

    Hahahaha. “(inaudible) Wanker.” What kind of conduct is that for a patrol guard?

  • Jeff Piper

    Unbelievable behaviour by jumped up security staff who believe they have the power to do anything.  If they say jump then you are meant to say how high. I think not.


    top bloke, think im going to send this to that company. and my god that woman was ugly. I think numbers should rally outside this company in support of the general freedoms of the public. Im getting bored with this kind of thing. 

  • Ksuwildkat

    Good on you Photog!!!!

    I encourage everyone to write the company and ask them what they are going to do about employees who threaten, harass, lie and make up laws.

  • Ksuwildkat

    LOL!!!  I was thinking that they were much more civil then we would have been over here on the other side of the pond  :)

  • Mattw407

    WWe should flash mob the place and flood it with photographers.

  • Anonymous

    A better target for that flash mob would be the employer of that security guard.  Specifically, Kingdom Security LTD.  The guard is poorly educated on the law, comes across as a bully, is ignorant of where her authority as a security guard ends, and makes her employer and the snack company that contracts with them look bad.
    Here’s the security company:

  • Adrianggordon

    So, how many people will be making a detour to go and take some photos of the GW factory if they’r ever in the area. I like the idea of a flash mob, ideally with flash guns, for the names sake.

  • WetcoastBob

    What do you expect?  Security personnel are scraped from the bottom of the barrel. (crappy job)  They also have to much idle time on their hands.

  • Ed

    The firm who employs those two ignorant guards can also be contacted on Twitter and Facebook:


  • Anonymous

    I’m horribly reminded of that old joke about who put the c*nt into Sc*nthorpe…

  • Load

    nice idea..

    It also happened in Hong Kong after a D&G guard threatened to break journalists’ cameras if they continued to take photos. After that,over 1000 peoples gather in front of their shop and take picture.Even Graham uden was there.
    see 1:19 

  • Paul Rhoades – Thoades

    We’ll post updates and any official comments or feedback we get on our community site http://www.VisitScunthorpe.Com thanks for the feedback.

  • Mathew Stark2

    wtf this guy just a wanker thats was just seeing if can get the guards the sack and did do the guys a fucking prick

  • Anonymous

    LMFAO seriously, I have tears in my eyes. I wonder how Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum would handle raising teenagers. Was he actually taking “faux toes” or just video?

  • steve

    I had an encounter like this once outside a UK petrol station.  I was just taking a photo of the price sign from a public path and was told I was breaking the law.  I told the woman that I could photograph anything I liked from a public path but she insisted it was illegal.  I argued with her for about 5 minutes and walked away.  Next time, I will turn the video on and make a good clip for youtube.

  • Jim Slade

    No he isn’t, he documents Scunthorpe for a website. They didn’t get the sack, they resigned. If they were breaking the law and trying to stop you doing something that’s perfectly lawful, I doubt you’d be on their side.

  • Cr

    applause. But actually they’d have had the right to stop you from taking facial pictures of the people, wether private or public. But only, if those people asked you to stop it. The law might be different in UK, than in Germany, or… but I assume it’s similar. It’s fun that those “guards” just do not have any more clue of the law than an average streetdog barking out loud.

  • Tog

    In the UK there are no laws specifically preventing anybody from taking pictures of people in a public place, faces or not.  If you do not want your picture taken, then don’t show your face in a public place.

  • Drpriess

    Has anyone tasted Golden ‘Wonder’ crisps? As someone who as a student worked for the company for a few weeks, I won’t put you off by revealing what bodily fluids were surreptiously added to the product by night-shift employees.

  • Ian Danger Hadingham

    I got an official warning from Facebook for posting a link to this; not quite sure who is leaning on FB, and they removed it.