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A memorable night with Chris Nowell

22.08.2017

So many people have messaged us over the weeks offering their help and support, it's been truly heart warming. Chris Nowell is a photographer that does a lot of work in the Peak District, I had seen some of his images before we started 73in73, his photos are excellent. What I hadn't realised before he messaged us though was that Chris is blind. He lost total sight in one eye and was partially blinded in the other during a rocket attack whilst serving in Afghanistan in 2007. Chris suffered severe head injuries and had to spend a significant amount of time in hospital. He got into photography as part of his recovery with Blind Veterans UK and now runs the 'Peak Photography Project' which helps other people from Blind Veterans UK get into photography, get out in the Peak District and capture beautiful images. 

 

We had arranged to meet at the summit of Shutlingsloe, location number 67 in Peak District - Through the lens, which is often described as 'The Matterhorn of Cheshire’ because of its iconic shape. It's not the longest walk in the world but it certainly is steep! It took Tracy and I quite a long time to get up it, we had to have plenty of breaks but it was totally worth it. Chris was accompanied by his friend and fellow photographer Andy Evers, it was an absolute pleasure to spend the evening with them both. It was fascinating, impressive and somewhat humbling to see how Chris had adapted to be able to take such great photos. 

 

It was very windy at the summit and for 10 minutes or so we got rained on, but tonight wasn't like the horrible boring clouds of Carhead Rocks, no, these clouds were dark, shapely and dramatic! There was also a bit of a gap near the horizon which the sun dipped under, the golden light hit the foreground and illuminated the scene, it was absolutely beautiful, this is one of the photos of that moment:

 

We took a whole bunch of photos that are similar to the one above, I could easily post 10 of them that we are happy with. But like so many locations on this challenge, it became more about the people than the landscape. We had an unforgettable night with Chris and Andy and will be meeting with them again in the near future. This selfie was taken by Chris just before the last of the light faded:

 

I urge you all to check out Chris's Peak Photography Project Facebook page and give him all the support and best wishes you can. We will be following, that's for sure.

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