The 2012 Pride of Britain Awards

October 29th, 2012.

Now, you (perhaps) know me. If there's a chance of an envelope being opened anywhere in London, and I'm bored, I'll go. Hence, the Pride of Britain Awards... I was there. And I'm not even British! And it was raining!

Here's how it (implausibly) went down.

My spot? Wedged against some metallic gateposts by a surging crowd (your sympathy gratefully accepted). Photos in this drection should be fine but any arrivals coming from the roadway will be photographed through parallel vertical bars. I'm game for that challenge.

My spot? Wedged against some metallic gateposts by a surging crowd (your sympathy gratefully accepted). Photos in this drection should be fine but any arrivals coming from the roadway will be photographed through parallel vertical bars. I'm game for that challenge.

The evening comes to an interesting start : Jane Torvill. Who, together with Christopher Dean won Gold for GB at the Winter Olympics in 1984. So... these awards are clearly not necessarily limited to recent achievements?

The evening comes to an interesting start : Jane Torvill. Who, together with Christopher Dean won Gold for GB at the Winter Olympics in 1984. So... these awards are clearly not necessarily limited to recent achievements?

As this is not a movie premiere, I'm back in unfamiliar territory where many of the arrivals are concerned -if indeed they even face our (crowd) direction. This? Who knows. I include it because the mysterious face at right gives it something.

As this is not a movie premiere, I'm back in unfamiliar territory where many of the arrivals are concerned -if indeed they even face our (crowd) direction. This? Who knows. I include it because the mysterious face at right gives it something.

I'm sure this is yet another teen boy band I'm expected by people half my age to be intimately aware of the awesomeness of. Are Hanson still around, or is it all Jonas Brothers these days?

I'm sure this is yet another teen boy band I'm expected by people half my age to be intimately aware of the awesomeness of. Are Hanson still around, or is it all Jonas Brothers these days?

Somebody said something about "Christina" and given the hair colour I thought Christina Aguilera. Leaving aside the unlikelihood of this, it's still a better guess than any other I can come up with.

Somebody said something about "Christina" and given the hair colour I thought Christina Aguilera. Leaving aside the unlikelihood of this, it's still a better guess than any other I can come up with.

I'm just as surprised as she is

I'm just as surprised as she is

Let me tell you, I was a lot more excited in 2012 that I'd photographed Rolf Harris than I am here in 2014 being reminded that I've photographed Rolf Harris.

Let me tell you, I was a lot more excited in 2012 that I'd photographed Rolf Harris than I am here in 2014 being reminded that I've photographed Rolf Harris.

It's started raining (again) and this is comedian Alan Carr, making light of it. Fortunately, my camera is water resistant. (my lens, however, is not)

It's started raining (again) and this is comedian Alan Carr, making light of it. Fortunately, my camera is water resistant. (my lens, however, is not)

When my lens gets very wet at premieres / events, I'm often torn as to whether to wipe off the water, or ride the weird optical effects caused by droplets and flash.... I think I'll ride it out.

When my lens gets very wet at premieres / events, I'm often torn as to whether to wipe off the water, or ride the weird optical effects caused by droplets and flash.... I think I'll ride it out.

I'm really just taking photos of anybody who is wearing a more-impressive-than-average hairstyle at this point, and hoping wireimage will help me later. (But there's now like 400 photos of the night on Wireimage and I'm tiiiiired!) (edited to add : I think this is Holly Willoughby)

I'm really just taking photos of anybody who is wearing a more-impressive-than-average hairstyle at this point, and hoping wireimage will help me later. (But there's now like 400 photos of the night on Wireimage and I'm tiiiiired!) (edited to add : I think this is Holly Willoughby)

Paralympian Ellie Symmonds strayed under my ability to photograph. Which is not a height joke, it's a "why does everybody insist on blocking my view of everything??" complaint!

Paralympian Ellie Symmonds strayed under my ability to photograph. Which is not a height joke, it's a "why does everybody insist on blocking my view of everything??" complaint!

Tom Daley won a Bronze Medal at this year's summer Olympics. Back when the weather was warm and weirdly (for London) quite dry! And I've taken to shooting through metal bars now, when required.

Tom Daley won a Bronze Medal at this year's summer Olympics. Back when the weather was warm and weirdly (for London) quite dry! And I've taken to shooting through metal bars now, when required.

Some dude rolls along the red carpet and apparently is playing tetris on his laptop. Is he being rude or could it be....?

Some dude rolls along the red carpet and apparently is playing tetris on his laptop. Is he being rude or could it be....?

It's Professor Stephen Hawking! He hasn't won a Nobel Prize - but he's won the US Presidential Medal of Freedom. Freedom for... you know... Theoretical Physics. (Hey, I don't judge. I know little of theoretical physics). Still, awesome to know I can leave right now and short of Charlize Theron and Scarlett Johansson coming, my Photo For The Day problem is very much solved.

It's Professor Stephen Hawking! He hasn't won a Nobel Prize - but he's won the US Presidential Medal of Freedom. Freedom for... you know... Theoretical Physics. (Hey, I don't judge. I know little of theoretical physics). Still, awesome to know I can leave right now and short of Charlize Theron and Scarlett Johansson coming, my Photo For The Day problem is very much solved.

Actress... posssibly from Downton Abbey? (I haven't watched Downton Abbey). My camera is so uncertain it's decided to focus on the dress instead. It is a nice pattern.

Actress... posssibly from Downton Abbey? (I haven't watched Downton Abbey). My camera is so uncertain it's decided to focus on the dress instead. It is a nice pattern.

Susan Boyle wore fur and elected not to look in my direction. That's fine : she's not on my iPod. Which would be no great insult unless you know who IS on my iPod. (It's true. Lindsay Lohan did release an album in 2006).

Susan Boyle wore fur and elected not to look in my direction. That's fine : she's not on my iPod. Which would be no great insult unless you know who IS on my iPod. (It's true. Lindsay Lohan did release an album in 2006).

Xfactor (?) Judge and singer Tulisa Contastavlos shows up. I'd make fun of the surname, but oddly in trying to once figure out how to say it, I ended up remembering how to spell it as well.

Xfactor (?) Judge and singer Tulisa Contastavlos shows up. I'd make fun of the surname, but oddly in trying to once figure out how to say it, I ended up remembering how to spell it as well.

Oh, I'm DEFINITELY not wiping the water droplets off my lens. This lighting is exquisite and I had NOTHING to do with it!

Oh, I'm DEFINITELY not wiping the water droplets off my lens. This lighting is exquisite and I had NOTHING to do with it!

I.... might now have to get that lens wiped and looked at.

I.... might now have to get that lens wiped and looked at.

I take a break from getting drenched and soaked and shouted at / around to take note of the Pride Of Britain Logo. And after a summer dominated by the corporate logo freakshow of the Olympic Mascots, I gotta say : this is a really nicely designed logo! Now... who else can I photograph that I can pretend not to know?

I take a break from getting drenched and soaked and shouted at / around to take note of the Pride Of Britain Logo. And after a summer dominated by the corporate logo freakshow of the Olympic Mascots, I gotta say : this is a really nicely designed logo! Now... who else can I photograph that I can pretend not to know?

OMG it's one of the Spice Girls. (Obviously I needed somebody to tell me that this is Mel C (aka. Sporty)).

OMG it's one of the Spice Girls. (Obviously I needed somebody to tell me that this is Mel C (aka. Sporty)).

And this is / was Baby Spice. Well... that leaves just Posh to go and I'll have photographed the whole set (did I mention I've photographed all five TV Star Trek captains AND I'm still SINGLE? It's true - all five!!)

And this is / was Baby Spice. Well... that leaves just Posh to go and I'll have photographed the whole set (did I mention I've photographed all five TV Star Trek captains AND I'm still SINGLE? It's true - all five!!)

Things go from dire (for my street cred) to awesome as Sir Ian McKellen arrives to Class Up This Place. He's Gandalf in Lord of the Rings and the upcoming Hobbitses. So that's definitely not uncool right there!!

Things go from dire (for my street cred) to awesome as Sir Ian McKellen arrives to Class Up This Place. He's Gandalf in Lord of the Rings and the upcoming Hobbitses. So that's definitely not uncool right there!!

"What do you mean 'the dress code for this event is informal/casual'??"

"What do you mean 'the dress code for this event is informal/casual'??"

"Just some tea, please" .. as opposed to a debilitating eye injury caused by an Autograph Dealer willing to sacrifice a Sir's eyeball in the cause of keeping some photos dry...

"Just some tea, please" .. as opposed to a debilitating eye injury caused by an Autograph Dealer willing to sacrifice a Sir's eyeball in the cause of keeping some photos dry...

It's Peter Andre!! (please tell me I'm not alone in remembering who Peter Andre is...)

It's Peter Andre!! (please tell me I'm not alone in remembering who Peter Andre is...)

The second-to-last arrival is rocker Jon Bon Jovi, looking rather cool and less long-haired and head-banded than I remember. When I say "I remember", of course I mean I'm far too young to remember, but my grandparents used to have posters of him on their wall....

The second-to-last arrival is rocker Jon Bon Jovi, looking rather cool and less long-haired and head-banded than I remember. When I say "I remember", of course I mean I'm far too young to remember, but my grandparents used to have posters of him on their wall....

Who was the last arrival? I don't know... I don't think I photographed them (curse my 2-years-younger-than-I-am-self!!) (Edited to add : Nicole Scherzinger... who I subsequently photographed at Men in Black III)

SO... was it worth it? Well... yeah. I photographed STEPHEN HAWKING. Which is pretty randomly awesome. So I'll put it in my archive of movie premieres.

Until next time!