County’s natural beauty recorded in photos

HORSELL Common and The War of the Worlds sculpture in Woking town centre feature in a new book of photographs of stunning views of Surrey.

COUNTY SET – The new book Surrey in Photographs featuring stunning images taken of the county by John Miller

The images are among 126 included in Surrey in Photographs by John Miller. He has captured the changing seasons, weather conditions and times of day to create a comprehensive photographic essay of the whole county.

Photographer John Miller

John, a professional photographer for 35 years, said many people not familiar with Surrey did not know about the natural beauty across the county. He and his family moved to Dorking from London 23 years ago and were pleasantly surprised by what they found.

“I had a view of Surrey as a suburban county but when I came here I was stunned by the beauty of the Surrey Hills and I still think it is a fantastic place to be,” John said.

“A lot of it is due to the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty protection laws and the National Trust. I had worked in the travel industry as a photographer in the 1980s and 1990s and the views around here are some of the most stunning I’ve seen anywhere in the world.”

John was commissioned to produce the book by Amberley Publishing. He already had a body of photographs he had taken across Surrey, mostly for the National Trust, and then set about travelling around the county for about a year to photograph areas he had not previously visited.

“I had to do a bit of research and found some interesting things. I had no idea that Horsell Common was the setting for The War of the Worlds, which ties in with the sculpture in the centre of Woking, both of which are included in the book.”

Most of the photographs were taken early in the morning or at sunset with the soft light enhanced by long shadows.

Woking’s famous Tripod from The War of the Worlds

“At the beginning of the day the light has a unique quality. In the evening it is the dying rays that are the best ones. I tended to take a lot of landscapes in the autumn or winter. Most landscape photographers would tell you that early and late are the times that produce some amazing results.”

The book is likely to appeal to Surrey residents, possibly as a gift for friends and relatives far away and people who have recently discovered the beauty of the county.

“I think during lockdown, a lot of people discovered what was on their doorstep. There are some lovely, peaceful, remote spots here,” John said.

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