I retired from full time employment in 2003 after a thoroughly satisfying career with The Boots Company, initially as a pharmacist and then as a personnel manager and latterly as a Director. My work was predominantly reliant on good communication skills and face to face contact.
The transfer into retirement was smoothed by the voluntary work I had been engaged in for some years as the Chairman of a large further education college in the area. This role continued for a number of years after retirement and gave me insights into a wide range of managerial skills.
I had always wanted to take up a "hobby" that would introduce me to new challenges and photography was high on the bucket list. So, I bought a camera, Canon by the way, and started to take photographs. I also joined a local camera club and began to take a much deeper interest in the subject. At one evening event a guest speaker urged the audience to consider specialising in one field of photography rather than trying to become good at everything. So, was it landscapes or portraits or macro that would take my eye. No, I had always been an avid sports watcher. I also played golf and had, in my earlier years, been a football referee! The highlight of my refereeing career was to be given the appointment to referee an early round of the FA Cup at Corby Town .. and experience I will never forget.
My first work came about when I emailed a number of local sporting organisations asking if they needed any photography. Beeston Hockey Club replied within 24 hours. I went for an interview and was successful. It turned out to be an excellent spring board. I was soon photographing their first team who were English champions at the time. Through that work I then gradually became involved in doing some work at the national level. Having been fortunate to cut my teeth on hockey photography, with great support from more experienced sports photographers, I decided that it was OK to use my acquired skills in other sports. So I started to seek out opportunities in football, cricket and tennis and I soon found myself able to fill the diary.
I am now working as a freelancer and have covered many events at both l local and national level. Highlights are always difficult to pull out but I think that being at the Ladies Cup Final at Wembley when Notts County played Chelsea was very memorable - even though Chelsea came out as victors.
Wherever I am, I always have to pinch myself as a reminder of just how lucky I am to be combining my passion for sport with the chance to capture those exciting and memorable moments that mean so much to participants and spectators alike.