Top photographers remember Tommy Hindley

Thursday afternoon sees the funeral of Tommy Hindley, the outstanding sports photographer and SJA member, who died last week.

One of his colleagues, Shaun Curry, has put together an impressive tribute to Tommy, interweaving some of Hindley’s best pictures with comments and anecdotes from those who knew him best and worked with him for longest.

Hindley's handiwork: Sebastian Coe expresses his releif as he wins the Moscow Olympic 1,500m gold medal, the sort of image which Tommy Hindley excelled in taking
Hindley’s handiwork: Sebastian Coe expresses his releif as he wins the Moscow Olympic 1,500m gold medal, the sort of image which Tommy Hindley excelled in taking

The pictures taken by Hindley include this memorable image from more than 30 years ago, one which has come over time to symbolise the Moscow Olympics of 1980, and the great turnaround in fortunes in the space of a sporting week between Steve Ovett and Sebastian Coe. It is exactly the sort of picture that Tommy Hindley excelled in taking.

Among the written tributes is this from Mike King, the SJA’s chairman of photography judges for the past two years: “I first met Tommy in 1981. He was an absolute dynamo of energy. Like most athletes, we sports photographers are super competitive, but when it’s finished we are mates as ever.

Top photographer: Tommy Hindley
Always seeking the perfect picture: Tommy Hindley

“I last saw Tom in action at London 2012. We had an absolute blast. Sometimes sport snappers can go to a major event, and keep missing each other. This was different, I saw Tom most days. He was in fine form. Along with another great friend, Jon Nicholson, shared a good few beers with Tom in the press centre bar after a busy day covering the Games.

“I saw Tom many times during the Games at the same place and time trying to get the iconic picture. He must have said to me a dozen times ‘..Mike, but is this the picture?’

“I thought I beat myself up about my pictures. I never knew that Tom was worse than me until then. Tom had an amazing energy and drive. Did I mention that he photographed tennis? A legend at that, but love the time the angry idiot called John McEnroe smashed balls at Tom deliberately. Could sue for that now.

“Tom was an inspiring photographer to know. RIP Tom.”

  • Between now and the end of 2013, anyone wishing to join the SJA may apply, with their initial fee covering their membership through until the end of 2014 – effectively 15 months’ membership for the price of 12. Click here for more details.


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Tue Oct 29: SJA Masterclass with Andy Dunn. For more information, click here
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Tue Feb 25: SJA Masterclass with Des Kelly. For more information, click here
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