Lewis Whyld originally trained as a barrister but only practiced for six months before making his hobby of photography his job. He started work at his local paper, the Matlock Mercury, which advised him to complete the NCTJ press photography course. He enrolled on the course at Sheffield College and was taught by Paul Delmar.
At the end of the course Lewis was offered a job at South West News Service and a few months later he took the famous shot of Concorde's final flight as she returned to Filton, Bristol in 2003. This image, of Concorde passing over the Clifton Suspension Bridge, was captured while standing on the skid of a helicopter at 3,000 feet as there was not enough room inside for a photographer!
He now works as a photographer in London for The Press Association and has worked on numerous assignments around the world, including covering the memorial service for Princess Diana and more recently photographing the Royal Wedding, the turmoil in Egypt and Wikileaks founder Julian Assange.
Talking about his training and the effect on his career, Lewis said: “Without my NCTJ training I wouldn't have the career I have now. Contacts I made on the course led directly to my first job at South West News Service in Bristol, which in turn led to my current position at The Press Association in London.
“The convergence of roles in journalism means photographers are no longer just competing with each other. Journalists are being given digital cameras. Photographers now also carry video cameras.
“Reduced budgets mean smaller teams are being sent to cover stories and those journalists with multiple skillsets will be at the top of the list to be sent.
"NCTJ training could help you gain some of those skills - and you will get out of it as much as you put into it.”
Lewis Whyld’s iconic photograph of Concorde’s last flight is on display at the NCTJ’s Photography Exhibition at The Guardian from 11 June to 15 July.