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Introducing Belstaff’s Everyday Heroes
“All good things are wild and free.” – Henry David Thoreau
In the rugged Highlands and secluded islands off the west coast of Scotland, five individuals have been brought together through a unique multimedia project.
Belstaff presents ‘Everyday Heroes’ – a fascinating visual insight into the lives of ordinary people living and working in extraordinary circumstances. Belstaff commissioned Leica photojournalist Emily Garthwaite to travel to these remote towns and islands to discover the unique stories behind our Everyday Heroes through interviews and spellbinding photography. Emily takes a slow, methodical approach to her craft and is often drawn to places and communities affected by conflict. Her aim is always to understand the person at the heart of a story and to create an authentic experience and lasting memories. In each portrait, the Everyday Heroes are photographed in their natural environment wearing iconic and hardy Belstaff outerwear. The project, ultimately, shines a spotlight on communities living on the edge and the wild and free landscape that binds them.
Writer and TV presenter Guy Grieve discovered the ancient art of scallop diving as a means to provide for his young family. Guy is drawn to extreme environments and living a very simple existence. In 2004 he spent a year living alone in Alaska and, together with his wife and two young sons, sailed 15,000 miles from Venezuela to Scotland. In 2010, Guy set up the Ethical Shellfish Company, which aims to support sustainable fishing methods to help contribute towards the future recovery of our seas.
Rebecca and her young family live on the tiny island of Ulva off the west coast of Mull, alongside a handful of other residents. Together with her husband, she runs a small café on the island catering to visiting tourists, many of whom have travelled to Ulva to trace their ancestors. Ulva is a beguiling and fascinating place dating back to Mesolithic times. Rebecca’s true passion is renovating and restoring the abundant empty houses in the area through an ambitious community ownership scheme to encourage people to repopulate and breathe new life into the island.
Bryce Cunningham grew up on Mossgiel dairy farm in Ayrshire, which was originally bought by his grandfather in the 1940s – but he always aspired to have a different career. Fate intervened when both his grandfather and father sadly passed away within a year of one another, and Bryce found himself suddenly at the head of the family business. The dairy industry had fallen on hard times and Bryce knew he had to work in a different way in order to keep the business afloat. Through simplifying processes, selling directly to consumers and introducing sustainable practices, Bryce has made Mossgiel an unprecedented success story. The farmer has recently started working with the Scottish government on an ambitious research project centred around organic, regenerative farming processes which Bryce hopes to spread far beyond the Scottish borders.
Farming has been in Fiona’s family for generations and she currently looks after 2,000 acres of land in Dervaig on the Isle of Mull. Fiona has made a success of Antium Farm and the animals on it despite the challenging conditions of the island and she is part of a small yet prominent community of female farmers making their mark.
Scarborough-born John Ogden is a well-known character in the port town of Oban, a gateway to the Hebridean islands. After working as a fisherman in the 1970s, John spotted a gap in the market for tourists who wanted fresh, local seafood at an affordable price. John’s little green shack has been a staple of Oban harbour since 1990 and has attracted visitors from as far as Australia and America in search of John’s famous prawn sandwiches – once voted the best in Britain by the Observer magazine.