Last week I had the great privilege of photographing a dinner for the independent think tank, Policy North. I think the choice of after-dinner speaker and venue were rather inspired: the former British Army officer and Victoria Cross decorated Johnson Beharry at the Imperial War Museum in south London. Policy North’s remit is to promote the interests of the North of England to government and investors. The other special guest of honour invited to meet with the corporate and Westminster guests was Chancellor Phillip Hammond. It occurred to me that perhaps the North might just be the sort of engine to the UK will need to power us through the Brexit years, particularly if its competitive advantages of manufacturing and new high tech services entice inward and increased investment. The benefits to the entire UK would be substantial in such a case and might result in a more equitable and progressive distribution of wealth and power.
As it was a very important event for Policy North, I asked another photographer who specialises in this sort of thing to shoot with me. Chantal Richards did a superb job, and I’m so very grateful for her dedication on the night. If you think a posh dinner is long, try photographing one — it’s takes real stamina and artistry. So many thanks, Chantal, for all the help. And well done to the Policy North organisers, particularly Chief Executive Jon Aydon and Policy Director Callum Crozier.