This year’s Beach of the Dead was, I think, the biggest (and possibly the best) yet, as the start literally had zombies further than the eye could see. Whilst the overcast grey skies may well have been appropriate given the occasion, I can’t help thinking that the intermittent rain throughout the morning and early afternoon, might have dampened the spirits of both spectators and zombies. For the last two years unseasonably sunny, warm weather has been the order of the day.
The mass assembly of the undead prior to the start at 3:00 PM would have afforded many excellent photo opportunities had your correspondent not been in a public house. I was enjoying a rather excellent item from the Specials board (a minute steak, as you asked), as recommended by the barkeep (This is not a claimable expense by the way. Editor).
On finally adjourning from the hostelry, your correspondent made his way to the West Pier to find an infeasibly large volume of zombies and spectators. With yet another new route this year, it is clear the organisers have an increasingly tricky job on their hands to keep the disruption to a busy Saturday Brighton town centre to a minimum. The horde grows ever larger as the years go by. Having said that, I think the stewards do a very good job of corralling the undead. It was most amusing when crossing at traffic lights, how the zombies surrounded and befuddled drivers. One couple pressed up against the window of a restaurant hosting a children’s birthday party. That was very funny.
Photographing zombies is, much like free falling from 23 miles up, not without risks. Although this correspondent was not groped by any zombies like last year, I could have done without one member of the undead jumping into every large puddle they could find. Fortunately I was able to move the camera to avoid a soaking!
As usual the undead make-up ranged from the briefest application of slap to what must have taken rather a lot of work. Whilst lazy commentators might say the event appealed from nine to ninety, it is true that the age of those participating did range from babes in arms through to what seemed to be pensioners. So perhaps nine months to ninety might be more accurate. There were all types of people participating in the Beach of the Dead, proving it to be a very inclusive event. By and large the zombies were well behaved but there was the occasional hand placed over the front of the camera as they shambled past. It’s quite funny to hear someone munching on a limb muttering “I feel so violated!” after being photographed.