Evering Road People

Life in the Shadow of Grenfell

Carnevale di Viareggio

Behind the scenes in Vatican City

Costa Rica Cloud Forest

Hello Cazenove

Palio di Siena

Eyewitness: The Guardian's centre page

A story in Lampedusa

Migrants: South of Italy

Calais camp

Evering Road People

Evering Road is a mile long road in the heart of Hackney. I've lived here for more than eight years, without ever truly knowing those around me.
Lockdown presented a unique opportunity. I couldn’t do my usual work, but I could turn my camera on to my own community. With people having more time on their hands, I started documenting my neighbours from a safe distance.

At first, the project was mostly for my personal sanity, but in talking to the people of Evering Road, I began to uncover a consoling web of human stories, small gestures and common threads. One of the few positives of this pandemic has been how communities have pulled together. I saw evidence of this every time I stepped out of my front door.
So I opened an account on Instagram called @everingroad and posted daily. The idea was to tell at least one story per day during the first phase of lockdown, which began on the 24th March 2020 and ended on the 31st of May.

The account quickly became popular, featured in Guardian Weekend and on the Instagram account of Vanity Fair Italia, and the BBC. This was great but I’m particularly proud of the way in which it became a community hub; a way for neighbours to connect and get to know each other.

Evering Road is unique. Built at the end of the 19th century, this long, leafy road is strikingly diverse, a microcosm of London life in 2020. Its levels of social housing and ethnic diversity are significantly higher than the national average. Many properties are owned by housing associations and estates are interspersed amongst the Victorian villas.
Just twenty years ago, the area was considered rough. Although gentrification has inevitably crept in, the road holds traces of how east London used to be. It’s a wonderful melting pot, where a strong sense of community sits alongside liberal values. Here people can be whomever they choose.
There is also a real mixture of ages, from young families to students just starting out, to retirees who have lived entire lives here, frequently after having arrived from faraway countries and impoverished backgrounds. In documenting the road’s residents, I’ve had the privilege of listening to a wide variety of stories across the generations - from the struggle of millennials to the anxiety of people in their 80s.

Despite the huge range of voices, what emerged most from the many people I spoke to was our collective humanity. Whatever our age or background, we share so many of the same joys and fears.
That’s why I decided to go one step further and create a photo book. A unique diary of these unprecedented times. A memento of how we pulled together, to take forwards with us into the future. I put the project on Kickstarter, swiftly raising enough to make it a reality, with many generous donations from the very community I’ve documented.
So here we are. A road, like hundreds of others but also distinctive. Its residents united through their smiles to each other, the views shared from windows, the small gestures of cooperation. Lives lived side by side and - perhaps more than ever - together.

Helena
‘I’m originally from Antigua but I’ve been living on Evering Road for more than 25 years. I’m self-isolating at the moment and one of the things I’m missing the most is sitting in my car listening to the radio. The postlady gets a mint every time she delivers my letters.’

Zeynep
‘I love my job. It keeps me fit without having to pay for a gym. I know lots of people on the road. Sometimes, when I see their faces around Stokey, I can remember their addresses. But usually when I’m not in uniform nobody recognises me! One of the residents is growing a fruit tree and some other plants for my allotment. And I often have a mint in my pocket.’

Rebecca
‘I’m due to give birth on the 17th of April and I’m planning to do it at home. Last week it was reported on the news that that would be the peak of Covid19 deaths in the UK. My due date, can you imagine? It prompted me to write a letter to my unborn baby about the extraordinary time they are arriving into. Part of it says, “Of course there is despair, anxiety and grief, but woven into this
unchartered territory are many acts of kindness, the opportunity to make better choices and build a better future, which I hope you will be part of.”’

Mohammed
‘I moved from India to the UK ten years ago. Within two months I was employed by the council and have been taking care of Evering Road ever since.’

Oliver
‘I moved here from south London five years ago. I work with people affected by protracted conflicts, like those in Syria and Iraq. So many people have lost everything and had to flee their countries. If you’ve grown up in the UK, it’s often hard to put ourselves in that situation but the current crisis helps us to realise, if only in a small way, how fragile things are and how difficult it is when you feel threatened.
I have suffered from anxiety in the past but I’ve learned to be kind to myself and to think of what I can do well in the next half an hour, or hour, without necessarily thinking about tomorrow or the near future.
My priorities for this year have changed so much. At the moment, the idea of just seeing my brother and nieces makes me cry. It would make me so happy.’

Colin and Zoe
‘I grew up on this road. I know everybody and everything about it. I helped to fly my old friend Zoe back to London a few days ago and offered a place to stay. We are now working on opening a plant and flower shop called Number 50 in my dad’s old cab office. I’ve also been trying to think about what I can do for local elderly residents. I just laid some new flooring for Helena next door.’

Sophie, Trinity and Kevin
Kevin says, ‘We are proud Londoners, with a few stories to share between us. We’ve been going through a difficult period but they say that time is a healer...’

Kate and Rita
‘It’s been just over a month so far of lockdown. I think it’s amazing how a situation like this, outside any of our experience, soon becomes normalised. We adapt so quickly. But while this ability to accept things can be a strength, I do worry that it might prevent us from asking the right questions. Yes, the ways in which communities are coming together to support one another is inspiring and worth celebrating, but it mustn’t stop us from demanding answers from those responsible. We must refocus and hold our government to account for their poor and costly decisions. We need honesty and clarity, moving forward. Clapping is

not enough - we need to demand better for those, the families, communities and frontline workers, who are actually fighting this.’

Alice, Aki, and Jimmy, Bob, Laura and Hester, Tiago and Martina
Alice says, ‘Our three families live in different flats within the same house at the E5 end of Evering Road. We don’t have access to the back garden so we’ve decided to turn the front garden into a communal space. Our passion for music and great food, as well as the kids playing together, has really helped to cement our friendships.’

Peter with “Dad”
Peter says, ‘I’ve lived on Evering for 13 years and in Hackney since 1984. I create my puppets in the attic of the house. My latest show, which was supposed to be touring in September, is an adaptation of the nonsense poem ‘The Dong with the Luminous Nose’ by Edward Lear. It’s a heartfelt expression of my own feelings of isolation and loneliness. The themes are so apt for the current moment, it’s a real shame the tour will be delayed. “Dad” is the main character. I’m also in the process of developing a new project, once again about isolation. You could say I’m a bit obsessed with the subject.’

Imran, Amina, Zeynab and Zahra
Amina says, ‘Imran left India at a young age. We met in South Africa, where I’m from. We fell in love and fulfilled our dream of moving to London. It’s completely met all our expectations. Both of our children were born here and we are so happy to be able to give them a better life and a great education. Imran is still working, collecting clothes for a dry cleaning company. When he comes home the kids are so excited to be able to play in the van, swinging from the handles and jumping in and out of the different doors.’

Jim and Shartyn
‘We’ve lived here for nearly 17 years. We’ve seen the whole place change, while at the same time many faces have happily remained the same. This whole situation has really highlighted the vital importance of community, both in providing a sense of comfort but also in an economic sense. It’s crucial that we support local people and businesses, otherwise they’ll be gone. Throughout this period we’ve really tried to shop locally and support local enterprise. The likes of Edi Supermarket, Londis N16, World Foods E5 are the lifeblood of all of us. They’ve worked so hard to maintain stock levels and retain hours despite growing pressure. They have been there for us and we will be there for them when we emerge from the fog. Indeed, most support will be needed by those other businesses who have been forced to close during this time. When such places as Bake St, Wander restaurant and Café Z Stokey return so will all of us - with support buoyed by survival.’

Singhashri and Shraddhasiddhi
Singhashri says, ‘We are ordained Buddhists and moved here just over two years ago. I emigrated to the UK from San Francisco eight years ago in order to become a mindfulness teacher. I met Shraddhasiddhi soon afterwards and we married in 2016. My daily ‘spacious solidarity’ blog features aspects of daily life under lockdown, including nature and wildlife in the area such as Abney Park and Hackney Downs. Shraddhasiddhi works at METRO charity, heading up their HIV and mental health services. We both love living here. It reminds me very much of San Francisco with its diversity, artistic feel and community vibe.’

Bev, Mark and grand-daughter Phoebe
Bev says, ‘Mark and I live right opposite the house where Jack McVitie was killed in 1967 by Reggie Kray. My uncle grew up alongside the Krays and was a boxer at the same club in Bethnal Green. But they were arch enemies and he
was violently attacked by them with a knife because Reggie Kray believed - wrongly - that my uncle had been sleeping with his girlfriend. Miraculously my uncle survived. My nan was ready to ensure they faced charges for attempted murder, but the Krays wined and dined her, although in a menacing manner, as they simultaneously made verbal threats to kill my mother and smash the windows of the bakery where my grandpa was working. My nan backed down of course. But my uncle never really got his experience with the Krays out of his mind, especially in the last couple of years of his life. He was having terrible nightmares. As he was dying, he was genuinely scared that he would see them again in the afterlife. I was blessed enough to be with him as he passed away and I really hope he does rest in peace.’
Mark says, ‘I moved into Evering Road in 1997 because the Nightingale Tower Blocks were taken down. My aunt and grandparents already lived in the Heatherley Court Blocks further down Evering Road. Bev and I are both still working as Platform cleaners on London Overground.’

Elizabeth and Jo, Sussan and Stuart, Sian and Tom and Dipak
Elizabeth says, ‘We moved into our flat in April 2007, just after the house had been converted into flats. Sussan and Stuart have also lived here since then. It’s always been a friendly house and we’ve had some great parties in Sussan’s garden. Sian and Tom moved into the first floor a few years ago and we all get along really well. When Dipak moved into the basement, he was surprised that we invited him up for neighbourly nibbles and said that he had never experienced that sort of neighbourliness before. If anything, the lockdown has brought us together more. We have been exchanging baked goods and home cooking, doing communal quizzes and shopping for each other. We did a World music quiz and a guy passing by started to sing along with the Ghanaian lyrics. He told us all about their meaning and even had a little dance with us.
We’re on the top floor and the only flat without outside space, so we brought out a picnic blanket to sit in the front yard. It’s turned into a lovely social hub. Olive, our cockapoo, is the best thing in our life. We both work in hospitals and Jo brought the virus home quite early on. We think we have both had it and recovered, which made us feel a bit more relaxed.
We hope we can hold on to the positives that have come along with the lockdown. Decreased traffic, pollution and airplanes, but more time for each other as neighbours.’

Maxine
‘I’ve been living in this house with my family since the 1960s. My brother Peter managed to buy the whole property in 1982 for £18,000, from three brothers who owned it. At that point, Evering Road was full of Jewish families. then West Indians started to move into the area. In the 1980s, the area was pretty derelict and many squatters took advantage. As a result, lots of houses ended up being bought by housing associations at auction.
I’ve been fully self-isolating since before lockdown even started but I haven’t missed a single Thursday evening clapping for the NHS from my doorstep. My arthritis means that clapping isn’t easy, so I dug out the bells that were originally bought to play in my church for the Olympics and proudly make lots of noise.’

Celia and Neil
Celia says, ‘We’ve been lovers of Hackney since the ‘60s and moved to the road in 1985. Neil came to the UK in 1963 from Trinidad, bringing with him a deep passion for music and a carnival vibe. In the past we held many word-of-mouth “blues parties” which were illegal parties organised in houses, often in the basement. People didn’t pay for entry but they would be charged for drinks and food. It was a good way to make money and get the community together. The music was Caribbean and they would start at 11pm and go on all night long. Hackney was very different back then in many ways. It was a very working class area with a lot of grass culture, as well as feminist activities and radical and literature projects, many of which we were involved with. It is still a fairly diverse area, surely more than other parts of London. And it’s still full of creative people.
The first person that lived in our house in 1875 was Harper Twelvetrees. He was an industrialist, responsible for developing and marketing Penny Patent Soap Powder. But even more interestingly he was one of the leading coordinators for the anti-slavery movement. He wrote a book on the life of a slave called “The Story of the Life of John Anderson, the Fugitive Slave”.
Until a few years ago we had street parties, we had face painting, mask making, cake stalls and even a bookstore. We are definitely ready for another one when this all ends.’

Steve
‘I was born around the corner and lived in the same house for over sixty years. I looked after my mum there when she suffered from dementia. In 2019, after she died, the council moved me, claiming that the house wasn’t suitable for just one tenant. I was terrified but thankfully I felt home on Evering right away. This road is unbelievable. There isn’t a lot of traffic and people are so friendly and cosmopolitan.
I haven’t been to the seaside for twenty years, but I always had a hankering to live on the south coast. But when I visited it wasn’t nearly as lovely as I expected. I’ll never leave Hackney.
My joint passions in life are music and my missus. When I was a kid I heard “The House of the Rising Sun” by the Animals on the radio and that was it - I knew I wanted to play guitar. I wanted one for years but my parents gave me a ukulele instead! I’ve been teaching guitar and ukulele for many years. You can get a ukulele for about £16 these days - the perfect lockdown activity! Last year I joined the Hackney Orchestra, it’s a self-funding orchestra and we play anything from classical to pop to jazz. We practice every Thursday night and perform at The Bridge Academy in Haggerston.’

Ivan and Lesley
Ivan says, ‘The first line of my autobiography reads, “I was born a Hungarian bastard.” It’s a homage to my parents. My father was Jewish and had to escape Hungary - my name is pronounced in the Hungarian way. He was on the run carrying a suitcase full of money when he met my mother. When they finally got to Austria’s border, they decided to burn all the money, so as not to attract any unwanted attention.
We finally arrived in the UK as a family in 1949 when I was one. They had to start life over. I’ve always assumed that the rest of my father’s family were killed by the Nazis but he never talked to me about the details. I haven’t been able to trace them. We used to hang the Hungarian flag outside the house for special occasions but it’s been a permanent feature for the last ten years. It would have made my father very proud.

Three years ago our house was destroyed by a big fire that started in the basement. We were very lucky to escape. Unbelievably the flag survived without any damage at all.
I met Lesley during our college years. We have two daughters and have lived on Evering Road for twenty years.’

Antony, Bekki, Esmé and Jude
Bekki says, ‘We moved to London from Melbourne five years ago and have been living on Evering Road since then. Esmé arrived six weeks after we moved in and Jude followed in 2019. We love this street, it has such a wonderful and welcoming community and you see a familiar face every time you go out. In these scary and uncertain times (and without a garden!), it's great to walk down our street with the kids to get some exercise and to see a bit of life outside the flat. As horrific as Covid-19 is, one good thing to come out of it is how the community has pulled together and become even closer.’
Esmé says, ‘Mummy is a chatterbox! I’m mostly missing going to Stokey Common and playing with my friends. I also miss Bake Street Café’ and going to nursery. But the new bubble machine is so much fun!’

Steve, Meera, Kushan, Maya and Sharm
Steve says, ‘The house was bought by my father in 1959, after he came from India in the 1950s. My parents had ten children here. Many religious ceremonies and weddings have been celebrated under this roof. We are Sikh and this house has been playing the role of a hub for the Sikh community for many years because we didn’t have easy access to a temple.
The first Sikh migration came in the 1950s. It was mostly men from the Punjab seeking work in British industry, which had a shortage of unskilled

labour. Most of the new arrivals worked in industries like foundries and textiles. The first batch of Sikh migrants usually removed the outward religious symbols (turban, hair and beard) as racist prejudice in Britain would have kept them out of work.
I grew up in the house and moved back with my wife and four children after my parents passed away. I have plenty of memories - I’ve been here longer than some of the trees in the road. The area was full of families. Gentrification has brought a new form of resident to the road and most of these houses have been turned into flats but there is still a good sense of a community as demonstrated during this period.’

Esteneita, Olivia and Ayomi
Esteineita says, ‘My dad came to the UK from Jamaican in 1949. He came with no intention to stay, he was simply looking for opportunities and maybe to save money to bring back home. The work was very hard, he worked in coal mines, building roads and ultimately in construction. Time slipped and as he used to say, he got “happily trapped” here. My mum decided to join him and then I came too.
I’ve always felt like I’m on an extended holiday! But the real holiday is when we all got back to Kingston. We love the vibe there, the sense of freedom and how strong the sense of community is, not to mention the food, it is

epic! We always try our best to bring some of that special Caribbean vibe back to London.’
Olivia says, ‘I’m one of four children and was born and bred here, as Ayomi is now. He’s even going to Benthal Community Primary School, which is where I went. In his class there are 21 children from all sorts of different backgrounds: Irish, Portuguese, African, Indian - you name it. All my school years were spent around here. This is home. I love to see other people’s cultures. My own friends come from all sorts of backgrounds, although many of them have now moved out. As young kids we would pretend to be the Spice Girls or Destiny’s Child, standing on my front garden wall to dance and sing.’

Meyla and Eser
Meyla says, ‘We’ve been married for three years. As is traditional in Turkey, we were given gold and money for our wedding. Normally people buy cars or a house, instead we decided to use it to start our new life in London.
London feels liberating compared to Istanbul. Here there is no judgement, people are free to express themselves as they wish.
The lockdown has helped us as a couple. Eser became less stressed due to the lack of commuting for work. We have more quality time as a couple. I feel happier because I am at home and feel safe.
I’m looking for a new job opportunity at the moment. In the past I’ve suffered from anxiety and now I’d like to be involved in a charity who work with mental health.
Anxiety never leaves, one has to find a way to control it and get used to it.
We have only left the flat for short periods. For the essentials and to exercise.
I have a mixture of hopes and fears but I’m trying not to think about it too much because it could trigger my anxieties.
In Turkey, like in many Mediterranean places, sitting outside and talking to passers by is very common. So this is something we really appreciate about this specific time. I enjoy sitting on our front steps “people watching” because it grounds me and makes me feel a part of something. We live opposite the girls of the “Iso Arms”. We often cheer them from a distance. Maybe one day we will join them in the pub!’

Vini and Vincente
Vini says, ‘We’ve been married for four years, together for six. We met one evening at The Joiner’s Arms on Hackney Road, which sadly closed in 2015. We got married at Pub on the Park in London Fields, and have been living on Evering Road ever since. As a gay couple and as foreigners, we feel accepted, safe, and at home here in Hackney.
We love the road for its beauty and our neighbours. This pandemic, though stressful, has caused a major positive shift in the way we all relate to each other. Many of us are now making greater efforts to greet each other on the street and get to know each other. We can't wait for the day social distancing is over because there are so many interesting people here that we'd love to get to know better. We're usually out walking our dog, Jack. He’s black and white with one blue eye and one brown. If you see us, do say, “Hello”. We'd love to get to know you!’

Miriam and Joe
‘We are just so blessed with our neighbours. Hassan keeps the gardens bursting with flowers and Helen from the top flat is just the best baker. The other day she dangled fresh doughnuts out the window on a string for us! We love living here and have really enjoyed a break from the normal daily grind during lockdown. Life seems much slower and calmer now
I’m still working at a special need school as a teacher but Joe has had some time off from his role as a set builder working on TV and film sets. We have a book sharing case on our front wall. The original blue one was made just to get rid of some books in house but it was starting to get a bit weathered. But after receiving a curry and a pina colada from our upstairs neighbour we took on their challenge to jazz it up. This new bookcase is dedicated to Joe’s mum Joanna who died from suicide two years ago. Suicide creates so many emotions and grief for all those affected by it, it’s a long battle trying to understand and accept it. The lockdown has been a special chance to take a breath and work out what we value in life, heal and let out some creativity. We hope the community will use and enjoy the new bookcase.'

Kirsty and Adriano, Chris, Susana, Becca, Marcela, Orla and Luke, Sean, Dylan and Joe
Marcela says, ‘This is our NHS Thursday night samba ensemble. I’m the horn player. It started with clapping but has escalated week-on-week to a full scale DIY samba escalation using bins and kitchen utensils. A lot of practice is still needed!
I’ve lived on Evering Road since 1986. I’m originally from Dublin and I grew up around my family’s horses. I was 11 when I joined an anti-hunting campaign group. We marched and protested. We also used horns similar to the hunting ones to distract and misguide the hunters.
I felt strongly about it and that conviction has never gone away. The funny thing is that my sister was actually a hunter. My views have always created very interesting family dinner conversations.
Years afterwards, some friends bought me this horn as a joke. It has been sitting in my house for years but during the lockdown I finally found a great use for it.
I share the house with four other households. We have always been friendly but now we spend more time together. I’ve always felt that if something happened, I could count on my close neighbours. I feel supported and shielded here.
I have always been a big fan of the road, it has a very strong socialist feel. During the year I had previous tenants knocking on my door, eager to share stories about the house. People have an emotional attachment to this place. ‘

Emma and Grace
Emma says, ‘I’ve lived on Evering for over two years. My older sister used to live in this very flat up until 2017, then she moved to Chicago. During my university years, I spent many summers and weekends visiting her here. I’ve always loved the spirit of this road and now even more than ever. We grew up in different countries and moved around a lot when we were kids. This road will always remind me of her and it truly feels like home.’
Grace says, ‘I’m really trying to embrace the positives of lockdown. We’re so used to being go go go all the time: hectic work schedules, plans most evenings and every weekend. Sometimes it feels like we don’t have time to breathe or take time for ourselves. So it’s been refreshing to just slow down, recharge and enjoy each other’s company. That said, this period has also made me realise how precious time spent with family is, and I can’t wait to see my 81-year-old Nan and baby nephew again.’

May, Gary, Marcus, Crystal, Leila, Lecie, Jameson and cat Simba
May says, ‘We’ve all lived in this house since 2016. We didn’t buy the pool for the lockdown, but we are definitely trying to make the most of it while the weather allows us.
The house has been busy during this period. It’s been challenging, to say the least, but also rewarding. The kids have been busy with different activities. At the beginning of lockdown, they collaborated with their scout group to create a collage of pictures encouraging people to stay at home.
The hardest part of lockdown has been homeschooling four kids. On a normal day they would be in school for six hours. Then they come back home and soon afterwards it’s bedtime.
As a mother, of course I know my children well, but during these last few months I’ve learned so much more about their personalities. Spending more time with them has been precious. It has actually been nice to be able to stop. Even if the rules soon change, we’re going to stay in. The kids won’t go back to school until September, even if it reopens. I declined the school’s offer as it’s not fair to ask children to socially distance. We think it would just be a stressful situation for them and I wouldn’t feel safe. When homeschooling finishes for the day we watch films and eat rubbish. We have all grown in size!’

Mr Danny
‘You’d need at least a month to listen to my life story. I think I’m the oldest resident of Evering Road. I’ve lived in this house since 1960. It was derelict when I bought it, the only place I could afford. I bought it for £4,000 and had to rely on private lenders for the mortgage. They put me under medical scrutiny before signing off my mortgage. The doctor crossed his fingers when the visit started. My brother took one look at the house and told me that if he knew a psychiatric doctor, he would send me straight there!
It took me many years to refurbish the place and I did everything myself, from the front door to the staircase. I was a French polisher by trade, which is a very skilled job. I came from Jamaica as a part of the Windrush generation. It took my neighbours ten years to even say hello. Back then the place was very different and not very inclusive. Cecilia road, not far from here, was called “Monkey Town”. So we’ve come a long way. I like all the neighbours now, they all respect me and we talk. I never create any issues. I am the only person that has spent 60 years in East London and never had a fight with anybody.
I don’t think this virus is human. It comes from “up there” to remind us that we are all equal. Humans can be hubristic but this virus doesn’t discriminate.’

Life in the Shadow of Grenfell

Client: The Guardian

After Grenfell's tragedy it was important to understand what life is for people that live in the area and the people that live in the tower opposite Grenfell.
Everybody in that communities has been touched deeply from what happened on the 14th of June 2017, when over 70 people lost their life.

The Silchester Estate was built in the late 60s in Notting Dale, an area renowned for its piggeries in the 19th century, its slums in the 30s and its race riots in the 50s. The estate’s four towers were part of a utopian vision, creating new communities in the sky, surrounded by open land. Ashby is more proud of the open land than anything else: while the nearby Westway is clogged with traffic pumping out pollution, this garden, which is open to the general public, allows the area to breathe.

After the fire, it was reported that Kensington and Chelsea had reserves of £274m, making it one of the richest councils in the country. It was also revealed that the fire-resistant zinc cladding approved by Grenfell residents had been replaced in the refurbishment contract with combustible aluminium panels, to save £293,368 on the tower’s £10m regeneration bill.

The result of an incredible 4 months collaborations with the community living in the shadow of Grenfell. Read the full article of Simon Hattenstone watch the great videos of Alex Healey in the link below

Whitstable House.
View from outside the barrels that surround Grenfell Tower

The view over Grenfell Tower from the 20th, last floor, of Whitstable House

Lina lives on the 20th and top floor of Whitstable Tower.
“We never really noticed the tower before,” Lina says, “but now you can’t not look at it. I kept waking up that night, but it was only at 6.30am that I went into the kitchen. My window was open and I heard a helicopter, looked out and screamed.”

A local resident

The back of Whitstable House

Joe in his flat inside Whitstable House on the 14th floor

The entrance of Whitstable House

Rama is one of the resident of Whitstable.
German born, son of Polish refugees.

Nahid Ashby is a long term tenant at Silchester Estate
Photographed in the her flat in Frinstead house on the 16th floor

Under the A40 flyover

Inside the Maxilla Club run by Joe and his parents Albert and Margaret Walsh

Inside Rama's kitchen in Whitstable.
His wife put the curtain up to avoid constantly looking at Grenfell.

Whitstable House and the A40, Westway, at dusk as seen from a balcony of Dixon House

Carnevale di Viareggio

The Carnival of Viareggio in Tuscany is one of Italy’s most spectacular street events. It has taken place since 1873. It fills a month of day and night festivities with parades of allegorical floats, parties and masked balls.

I have photographed the last 4 editions of the Carnival, focusing on the preparation and everyday life in the Cittadella. The "Cittadella del Carnevale", which opened in 2001, is an extraordinary architectural complex dedicated to the creation and preservation of the carnival, and is where the floats are prepared on the morning of the parade.

The carnival is a competition between all the floats and masquerades, and at stake are the honour and livelihoods of many people.

The main raw material of the carnival is papier-mâché. A local manufacturer, Antonio D’Arliano, was the first to make a sculpture for the carnival using the method in 1925.

There are four categories of float that make up the parade. First class, with nine giant floats, second class with four, the group masquerades of nine floats, and the single masquerades of 15 floats. The differences are in size, complexity and the budget available. It can take over six months to build the huge floats.

Here is a small selection of photos

Behind the scenes in Vatican City

Vatican City is a highly secretive world in miniature containing in less than half a square kilometre everything a state needs.

The Roman church has kept its political power well established through the centuries. Catholicism has always been at the centre of Italian society, but what is decided in the Vatican does influence the life of billion people around the globe.

The sense of history, the magnificent spaces and the silence are elements that wrap your senses when you walk around the Vatican. Tradition, hierarchy, spirituality and big events have always been at the heart of the Church.

Thanks to an extraordinary Jubilee, which normally happen every 25 years, and after many months of letters and meetings, I have been given an unprecedented opportunity: I have spent 2 months documenting some of the behind the scene and mainly the people in the Vatican.

From the nuns that work in the Sacristy ironing the Pope’s and clergies’ garments to the gardeners, from the Sampietrini in charge of the maintenance of St Peter to the Pope’s driver and the Swiss Guards, my work is an homage to the people at the base of the Vatican’s hierarchy showing situations rarely seen by the public.

A Swiss Guard keeps watch on the Scala Regia that connect the Apostolic Palace and St Peter's basilica

The key holder are in charge of opening some of the hundreds doors in the Vatican

A Sampietrino (people that are looking after the Basilica) polishing the floor of St Peter

Swiss Guard Kremer getting ready for the swearing-in ceremony

Renzo Cestier, the most senior of the 3 official Pope's driver filling the tank of the Popemobile

A nun walking inside St Peter's

Swiss Guards marching just outside the basilica of St Peter heading back to their headquarters

Inside St Peter's

Suor Rita, Marta, Elvira and Adelaide inside the Sacristy of St Peter ironing the garments for the clergy and for the Pope

St Peter's altar

Inside the Sacristy of San Giovanni in Laterano. Moments after the end of the ceremonies the clergy returns the garments worn

Early morning. Moments before another solemn ceremony a cardinal rests in front of the Holy Door

Early morning inside St Peter's in front of the grave of Pope John Paul II and senior clergymen are dressed and waiting for the beginning of another grand ceremony

Inside the Apostolic Palace, moments before the diplomats will walk the corridor to meet the Pope for the official greeting of the new year

A Swiss guard inside St Peter

The Pope and his closest team walking in the Prima Loggia inside the Apostolic Palace to go to meet the Diplomatic Corps for the traditional exchange of new year greetings

Costa Rica Cloud Forest

For four decades, Prof. Nalini Nadkarni has studied cloud forest in the Costa Rican town of Monteverde. In that time, global warming has wrought big changes – and now threatens to dry out the area’s lush hanging gardens for good. Only about 1% of the planet’s woodlands are cloud forest. The montane cloud forest is one of the world’s three most sensitive along with the threatened coral reefs and ice caps. And all indicative of a world that is experiencing climate change and that’s happening now. Nalini Nadkarni is sitting with her notebook and tape measure near the top of a strangler fig in Costa Rica’s Monteverde forest, on a branch 35 metres above the ground that is almost broad enough to walk along. Attached to the rope she has climbed to reach her perch, she squats among mosses, orchids and other plants that grow thickly on the bark, giving the canopy the impression of a hanging garden. Known as epiphytes – plants that grow on other plants – they are Nadkarni’s special field of scientific research, omnipresent in the unique ecosystem of Costa Rica’s montane cloud forest. They thrive between 1,500 and 1,800 metres and depend on their ability to take water and nutrients directly from the swirling mists that should cloak these slopes. But the continued existence of the cloud forest in Monteverde is under threat from global warming. Only occurring in a narrow altitude band whose upper limit is defined by where the mountain tops run out and by the altitude at which the trees can grow, it is being squeezed in a vice from below by warmer and drier weather patterns eradicating the enfolding cloud. Amphibians that once lived here have died back, to the point of species extinction in some cases. The breeding patterns of the area’s emblematic resplendent quetzals – the colourful birds that have long drawn tourists to the area – are being disrupted. Lowland species of bats and birds, including toucans, have begun moving into the cloud forest.

Hello Cazenove

These pictures are taken in London, in Hackney, specifically around and in Cazenove Rd.

The images are part of a bigger project and an exhibition developed in collaboration with the Hackney Museum about the road, the community and its surroundings.

Cazenove rd sum up the multiculturalism of the city, where within one road there is a Mosque, a Synagogue, a queer bar, plus the typical charity shop, the second hand shop, the art gallery, the organic shop etc etc...

Lag BaOmer is a traditional Jewish holiday. By somebody is interpreted as the anniversary of death

Rabbi Gluck, one of the spiritual local leader, photographed in his house

the beginning of Cazenove road

Palio di Siena

The culmination of the Palio di Siena is a 90-second horse race. But for Sienese, it is so much more than that: it is an embodiment of civic pride that has been held since 1656

The Palio di Siena horse race has been held twice a year, in July and August. Ten horses and riders representing ten of the city wards compete in a 3 laps race around the Piazzo del Campo. ThePalio is a way of life that dominates throughout the year.
There are seventeen contrade, or wards, in Siena. Each contrada is a city within a city that provides a social structure, a support network and civic identity. The Palio is the culmination of the rivalry between the contrade.

Each Contrada is like a Republic, with a Parliament, and assembly. There is a Priore, which the head of the Contrada, the Captain which is the Ministry of War and in charge of the Palio and many other roles.
Quote "The Palio in fact is like a War". The Palio is not a re-enact, is not made for tourists. It's real and it can get brutal.

The Tratta is the day that open the Palio. 4 days before the actual race.
40 horses run around the Campo. Only 10 get picked by the different Captains.
Through a lottery, the 10 selected horses get given to each Contrada. Some horses are better than others and the Campo knows it. The "Barbaresco" is in charge to pick the horse and bring it back to the Contrada. Only in that moment the Captain and i Mangini (his deputies) start contacting the jockeys.
Once the jockey has agreed, he arrives in the Contrada and kept in a secured place for 4 days and escorted 24h a day.

From the evening of the Tratta the test run begin. There are 2 test run a day till the day of the Palio, in total 6 test run.

In these 3 evenings each Contrada, even the ones that don't run, hold the 'cenini' (small dinners). The night before the Palio is the main dinner with the jockey too.

The atmosphere and the tension in the city grow every day, till the day of the race.
Everything ends in 90 seconds but a victory last for ever and get celebrated throughout the following year.

Contrada Lupa

The Contradiaioli follows the horse as they parade and gather from the different part of Siena into the Pizza del Campo, (the square where they run the Palio)

Contrada Pantera

Kids from Pantera looking at their horse

The horse of the Giraffa going back to the stable

The stable of the Contrada Pantera

Members of the Contrada Pantera wearing the official uniforms in the colours of the Contrada for the Historical Parade before the Palio

The horse that will run the Palio di Siena for the Pantera is blessed inside the Chiesa (church) of the Contrada Pantera.

kids in the Contrada Giraffa

Stable of the Contrada Giraffa

The Passeggiata Storica (historical parade)
just before the actual start of the race in the piazza del Campo

The horse of the Tartuca

La Mossa is the name of the starting line

The horse of Contrada Aquila

Tension is building up moment before the beginning of the race

Final lap, the Lupa passes the Drago and finish first

Jonatan Bartoletti aka Scompiglio celebrating the victory of the Palio and his place on history having won his second Palio on a row

Eyewitness: The Guardian's centre page

Client: The Guardian

Modern newspapers face aggressive competition for the reader's attention. Television and the internet have proved more effective at delivering breaking news fast, and a contemporary newspaper redesign must focus on the things which print can do better than other media.

The "eyewitness" centre spread is the most dramatic expression of this philosophy devoting the 60cm x 40cm centre spread to a single news image.
The image sits within a typographic frame, which brands it as part of the news run. The labelling is an enlarged version of the system used on other pages, but the colours - muted blue and greys – were selected so as not to compete with the images, and to stand apart from the warmer palette on the news pages, to suggest a distinction between text-led and visual content.

In an age of fast-moving but low-resolution images the still photograph has enormous power. Eyewitness has shown that even time-pressed newspaper readers value the opportunity to engage at their own pace with a photograph which can offer a depth of detail and meaning.

Santa Maria in Paganica church, L'Aquila, Italy
An earthquake hit the region one year earlier

Calabria, Italy

Marble quarries
Carrara, Italy

Mondello's beach
Palermo, Italy

Olive harvesting,
Italy

Naples, Italy

The Colosseum, Rome

Lisbon, Portugal

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre
London, England

Oktoberfest
Munich, Germany

The Blue Mosque at dawn, Istanbul, turkey

Funfair
Munich, Germany

A summer day inside the As Roma football club,
Rome, Italy

A celebration to the Routemaster buses,
Trafalgare Square, London, England

A story in Lampedusa

Thousands of migrants continue to arrive in Italy, crossing the Mediterranean Sea by boat and risking their lives to reach Europe.

In the last three years more than 50000 people have arrived on board more than 700 boats. Around 60% come from Maghreb,18% from East Africa, 15% from West Africa and the rest from Subcontinental Indian and Middle East.

Once they've landed, migrants are identified by the police and kept inside the Cpa (first aid centre) for few days, then redirected to other centres where they can stay longer and have their future decided. Some of them are granted asylum and others are sent back home. Approximately 20% of the 20.000 people who arrived in Lampedusa were deemed to be in need of international protection.

Between 2006 and 2008 there were several "tragic landings" reported, with an unknown number of deaths.

Since 2002 MSF has established a project at landings for one of the main entry doors to Europe, the island of Lampedusa. Although migration has become a structural phenomenon in Italy, reception conditions for these people have not markedly improved and the living conditions for undocumented migrants are usually extremely difficult. Even though high numbers of boat arrivals are foreseen, access to care for illegal migrants still remains a mirage in various parts of the country.

Lampedusa CPSA, holding centre (first aid centre).

Every person landed is supply with a number and the date of the arrived

Queueing for breakfast

The men dormitory

Patrolling the sea with the Italian Coast Guard

A migrant just rescued by the Coast Guard

Before going to the dump, the bigger boat has to be destroyed at the port.
This boat has landed on the 17th bringing 376 migrants to Italy

Lampedusa CPSA, holding centre (first aid centre).

the men are kept in a diferent area form the women and under-age

After maximum 3 days they should leave to other destination.
Ready to depart to other CPT in Italy

Lampedusa Graveyard where bodies found at sea of undocumented migrants get buried

Migrants: South of Italy

The dark side of the orange harvest.

Rosarno in Calabria. The town, in middle of the toe of Italy, is an agricultural community of 15,000 people. It is one of the places where undocumented workers queue each morning for jobs on the Italian orange and olive groves, and in the juice and candied peel factories that supply northern Europe. About 5,000 of them live in the Rosarno area alone.

Recently the international charity Médecins sans Frontières (MSF) became so concerned about the plight of migrants in Calabria that it sent a team to assess the situation. It found that most migrants were living in conditions that do not even meet the minimum standards set by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees for refugee camps in Africa. The organisation now runs free clinics in Calabria for undocumented migrants.

Migrant workers can only work on average three days a week. They can earn 25 euro a day, but some farmers have recently tried to cut pay to 11 euros a day as they find the price for oranges and clementines has fallen below their cost of production.

Many farmers have stopped harvesting their fruit because the world price is too low to cover their costs of labour, even using cheap migrants. They are facing competition from Morocco and Spain.

Rosarno.
The queue at damn on the main road of the town hoping to get some daily work

One of the squatted ex factory where migrants live
Samia is from Ghana and due to an accident he cant work

Inside one of the squatted ex factory where migrants live

Rosarno.
Squatted factory

A juice factory

The MSF clinic in Rosarno

Rosarno.
Another squatted factory

Migrants from Ivory cost arrived just a week ago squatting a derelict building in the orange grove

Inside the squatted factory at night

Calais camp

On the last days before it would have been evacuated, I went Inside the squatted centre where migrants have been previous living and sheltered in Calais.

Around 1,000 migrants are building a shantytown known as the ‘new jungle’ on the wasteland around the Jules Ferry day centre.

The Jules Ferry centre, is the first centre opened by the French government and for a few hours each afternoon, allows one hot meal, access to showers, toilets, electricity points to recharge phones and advice on migration and asylum issues.

The new day centre will provide overnight accommodation for 50 women and children but there is no overnight provision for men

Outside the small centre the condition are inhuman as no shelter or running water is provided.

Building shelters in what is called the 'jungle’