Processing black and white film

Shoot film not pixels (this time)

This week I finished a black and white film and got it developed. I had shot the film which was HP Ilford HP5 Plus, iso400 - through my Canon 1000fn, using the old kit lens and my Canon 50mm 1.4 lens. I think I have had this film in the camera for a couple of months but this was the first roll of black and white film that I have shot. So I was trying to remember that when looking for possible shots, I didn’t remember each time but thats part of the fun.

Leigh on Sea, Essex

Getting the film developed

Once I had finished the roll I had thought where to get it developed and my options were Snappy Snaps in Angel London, where I had been before, or go to Bayeux - Tottenham Court Road London a professional printers, where I hadn’t been before! I had heard great reviews about Bayeux, mainly from the Negative Feedback guys. I thought seeing as I don’t get film developed that often to pay the extra and go to Bayeux. 

a motorway flyover in West London

I went there on Monday afternoon, where I gave over the film. Set up an account and made my order to have the film processed with images being emailed to me and prints 5x7 produced with a white border and a matt finish. It felt professional from the off the actual shop front is slick and the staff were helpful. So I paid my £43, yes this is expensive quite a bit more than the £15 or so that Snappy Snaps charge.

The Quarry, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK

Two days later, I got the email letting me know that the film had been processed. This was quickly followed by the email with a WeTransfer link that contained the images. I cycled from my office in Clerkenwell to Bayeux on Newman Street. Once home I looked at the prints and instantly could see and feel the quality, they are ready to go on the wall quality. It wasn’t until a few hours later looking at them again I noticed that 7 images were missing. I had all of them digitally but not all of the prints. I sent an email to Terry at Bayeux. He replied the next morning and said he would do a reprint for me. After a few emails going back and forth Terry said he would get the full reprint to me this afternoon. And yes I got the full (36 shots) reprint hand delivered to me at my office. What great service this was, totally redeemed themselves. It was a really nice touch and showing my friends and family the prints, all of who have been impressed.

the other side of the river, The Quarry, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK

Going back?

On reflection I can’t see myself going back to Snappy Snaps, I think if you shoot film and get prints or just the digital copies the quality from Bayeux is second to none. Now that I’ve experienced it I don’t think I will want to scrimp on quality again. I also don’t mind paying this much as I’m paying experts to do a job, and Bayeux are an independent professional lab. People / shops like these should be treasured and invested in, they allow film photography to continue to be great.


Finally I know I am not the only person that thinks this way, as I mentioned before. The guys at Negative Feedback use Bayeux and have made a video featuring them.