Lower Block is extremely privileged to publish two exclusive photo zines by the late Gerry Cranham, a pioneer of sports photography and a true legend of the industry.
In 1963 Rangers would run out 4-0 winners, going on to win the League. But in 1968, despite a 2-2 draw at Celtic Park, it would be Celtic that were crowned Champions.
Old Firm derby day showdowns were as traditional as the centuries old Hogmanay celebrations that rang in another New Year.
The historic fixture was traditionally the most ferociously contested of the Old Firm clashes, and in the late 1990s it would be suspended due to the extent of the trouble between the notoriously passionate fanbases.
For Cranham, it was all about recording not just another epic battle on the pitch, but everything surrounding it, his pictures reflect all the pride and passion that Old Firm derbies generate.
Cranham recalls supporters enjoying plenty of booze, the odd bottle raining down from the terraces, packed to overflowing with fans vying for elevated vantage spots at the back. This was during an era he himself was chased down the street when locals detected his English accent.
Old Firm Derby Celtic Park 1968 | Gerry Cranham
Gerry Cranham captures the passion and drama of a traditional New Year’s Old Firm derby, Celtic Park, 1968.
A limited edition A5 zine containing 25 black and white photographs across 36 pages.
Old Firm Derby Ibrox 1963 | Gerry Cranham
Gerry Cranham captures the passion and drama of a traditional New Year’s Old Firm derby, Ibrox, 1963.
A limited edition A5 zine containing 30 black and white photographs across 40 pages.
A pioneer of sports photography, Cranham was already well established as one of the world’s leading sports photographers, much in demand by the likes of Sports Illustrated and Time Magazine.
In a tribute to Cranham’s career, Well Offside sports photo agency owner Mark Leech commented; “He had the gift to report back from a Govan pub or the Henley Regatta, wherever he went, he told the story.”
His pictures are historic documents, recording moments in time that preserve the action and the atmosphere.