Capturing Bus Stop Stories | Clear Channel

Picturing High Streets: Bus Stop Stories winning images go on outdoor display

12 Jul 2023 / News
By Clear Channel UK View Author on Twitter
Clear Channel Bus Stop Stories campaign on Adshel Live screen showing an elderly lady sitting at a bus stop.

Clear Channel partners with Historic England and Photoworks to launch an England-wide outdoor exhibition celebrating the humble bus shelter. 

Clear Channel today announced the winners of the ‘Picturing High Streets – Bus Stop Stories’ photography competition in partnership with Historic England and Photoworks. 

Bus shelters are the unsung heroes of our towns, cities and high streets, yet they are the backdrop to many of our daily journeys and experiences. The competition aimed to uncover these bus stop stories while celebrating the humble yet ever-present bus stop, as part of Historic England’s ongoing ‘Picturing High Streets’ photography exhibition. 

The 10 winning photographs will be showcased on Clear Channel’s digital Out of Home screens across England from today as part of a summer outdoor exhibition, running until 27 August. The photographs will also enter the Historic England Archive, the nation’s archive for England’s historic buildings, archaeology and social history. 

With more than 140 entries from all around the UK, 10 winners were selected by a panel of experts, including: 

  • Kelly Grist, Head of Design, Clear Channel UK  

  • Josie Saunders, Audience Engagement Manager, Photoworks 

  • Tamsin Silvey, Cultural Programme Curator at Historic England 

  • Harriet Clarke, Creative Programmes and Campaigns Assistant, Historic England 

  • Jonathan May, Director, Photoworks 

  • Shoair Mavlian, Director, The Photographers’ Gallery  

  • Danit Ariel, Assistant Curator, Photoworks 

People standing outside a launderette waiting for a bus

Bus queue, roofers & Launderama  by Russell Boyce 

 “Although you can only see a glimpse of the bus shelter, the two distinct stances tell you the audience is waiting for a bus. I love the photographer’s use of black and white, leading the eye to the laundrette sign, which everything else is framed around. You get a real sense of the diverse, multi-generational community that lives here. It’s ordinary people doing everyday things.Kelly Grist, Head of Design, Clear Channel UK 

A unique stone hut bus stop

 Turret Bus Stop by George Griffin 

This unique bus stop suggests the setting of a quaint little village that’s proud of its history. It’s clearly been well looked after and restored to its former glory for the use of generations to come. The fairy weathervane, roses and slightly wonky roof turret add to the scene, leaving you feeling like you’ve just stepped into a children’s story book.” Kelly Grist, Head of Design, Clear Channel UK 

Woman waits in front of bus at bus stop with a balloon

Patiently Waiting by Chloe Young 

Having grown up in Brighton, this bus stop transported me homeward. Aside from the recognisable red and cream of the Brighton buses, I love the balloon and its prompt to wonder what is being celebrated and who. This image shows how bus stops are vital portals for connecting people.”  Tamsin Silvey, Cultural Programme Curator, Historic England 

Man in cowboy hat waiting for bus at the bus stop

Bus Stop Cowboy by Seán Anthony   

I selected this image as it felt like it captures a moment of everyday life and shows how the world is full of interesting compositions waiting to be photographed. The orange colour of the cowboy suit filters through other parts of the image and matches the bench, the orange stripe on the shopping bag and the orange tones of the recycling bad in the right-hand side of the image. Photography allows us to look at everyday objects in a different way and with a new perspective.  

I like how this image shows the bus stop in use, a functional piece of the street where peoples sit, wait, meet each other.   

This photo makes me want to find out more about the figure in the cowboy suit…. where are they going, what is there story, what is their destination.” Shoair Mavlian, Director, The Photographers’ Gallery  

A mural by Banksy on a wall behind two people waiting at a bus stop

Waiting, Dreaming... by Mark Jeffery   

This photograph brilliantly shows how bus stops can be a canvas for imagination. The mural by street artist Banksy has transformed the familiar sight of people waiting for a bus into something intriguing and imaginative.Tamsin Silvey, Cultural Programme Curator, Historic England   

A woman walking to a bus shelter

Catching the Bus to Town by Jay Mason-Burns 

This image summarises the significant role buses play in helping people to complete everyday tasks. The photographer highlights the vibrant and coordinating colours between the lady’s attire, her shopping trolley, and the urban surroundings, reminding us that there is beauty to admire in ordinary and everyday activities. By including the bus stop’s sign, we are also able to trace the traveller through place and time as she makes her way on the 45 or 47 towards Birmingham’s shops.” Josie Saunders, Audience Engagement Manager, Photoworks 

Passengers queue to board a bus

I walked Ten hours by Mark Walch    

“I have fond memories of many years living in Liverpool where the bus was a big part of my city life; whether riding the early bus to Knowsley for work or the night bus home from a good time raving. This effortless photography captures a patient mix of people who use the service, with a coherent palette that pops.” Jonathan May, Director, Photoworks   

A polaroid of a street

A66 and over by Stuart Langley 

This image turns any preconceived ideas about this everyday structure on its head by offering an alternative interpretation of a bus stop story. It was chosen for its expressive and abstract qualities including the detailed yellow stripe that looks more like a pattern from nature than decoration for an urban bus stop. The blue hue of the bus shelter’s structure tinges the colour of the high street beyond, creatively distorting and abstracting your view as you await an incoming bus.” Josie Saunders, Audience Engagement Manager, Photoworks    


A construction worker waits at a foggy bus stop

Early Mornings at Clarence Pier… by Karl Bailey   

“This photograph was chosen for its honest portrayal of everyday life in the UK – rain or shine, people are plodding along and waiting at bus stops. Yet the composition adds a poetic layer to the image as it almost seems as though it’s raining under the shelter of the bus stop, while the sun has come out outside of it. I feel a calmness looking at this photograph, an exhale at the end of a long day.” Danit Ariel, Assistant Curator, Photoworks 

Three men leaning against a wall waiting for a bus

In the shadow of Shakespeare by Craig Bascombe   

The balance of tree, light and sky captured here creates a meditative mood echoed by the waiting, stationery bystanders. Standing, quite literally, in the shadow of Shakespeare’s legacy, this photograph could inspire a thousand words.” Tamsin Silvey, Cultural Programme Curator, Historic England   

Clear Channel has been supporting Historic England’s ‘Picturing High Streets’ outdoor exhibition since March 2023, additionally displaying 60 photographs crowdsourced from over a thousand public entries.