It’s remarkable how a good photograph – and a bit of good fortune – can bring people together. In 2006, Guild member John Eveson won the IFAJ photography competition with a marvellous image of sheep being clipped in distinctive dry stone pens at Becks Meetings near the border between Yorkshire and Cumbria .
Earlier this year, he received a letter from John and Rachel Hall on whose farm the pens are located, to tell a lovely tale.
“It seems that when the image was published in The New Zealand Farmers Weekly, a delighted reader, Joy Harris, wrote to the Halls to tell them she had photographed the pens during a memorable holiday in Britain,” says freelance photographer John. “Rachel Hall wrote back, telling them a bit about the farm and speculating in the way you do that she and her husband might visit New Zealand someday – although I get the impression she didn’t really expect to get there.”
The Halls did go to New Zealand, though, when they took a trip last December at fairly short notice. By remarkable coincidence, some friends from Richmond in Yorkshire were going to the country at about the same time – and it turned out they knew Joy Harris, the lady who had been so pleased to see John Eveson’s photograph.
“The upshot was that John and Rachel Hall were invited to stay with their new-found friend in New Zealand, who had retired from dairying but grew kiwi fruit, and a good time was had by all,” says John. “It’s a lovely story; and nice to know that it was the power of a good image that started the ball rolling!”