One of the best bits about my job is being able to step inside buildings (and in this case ships) that I would never normally get to see.
Lord West is a Labour peer and former senior naval officer and security adviser to Gordon Brown, who now rather quaintly has an office on HMS Wellington on the North bank of the Thames. He kindly gave us a mini tour of the ship, showing off it’s grand ballroom and captains office, before we made our way out onto the er, top bit (my knowledge of nautical terms is limited) for the shoot. Fortunately Lord West is an incredibly jovial man, offering to squat his 6ft frame so I could reach to photograph him on my tiptoes, and taking it remarkably well when I persisted in referring to the vessel as a ‘boat’ and not a ‘ship’. Apparently that’s quite a derogatory term for an ex warship. I just couldn’t stop saying the word ‘boat’, it was really embarrassing towards the end and I honestly don’t know why I was still speaking about it. But it all turned out well in the end, with a characteristically grey London summers day creating an atmospheric shot.