A business which combines photography courses and glamorous camping has opened for business in Weaverthorpe.
The venture is run by Tracy Chapman, 44, who has relocated from Surrey to Weaverthorpe, where she will be joined by her sister Karyn Harper, 48, a village resident for the past 12 years, who is a mother of two and ex sales representative for Pfizer.
Preparations to get the business off the ground are in full swing, with dad George and mum Pauline both involved in building, decorating and gardening duties.
Tracy was until recently an operations manager at Pfizer, latterly based at their Surrey UK headquarters near Reigate. She has left behind 13 years of sales, strategy and business planning to return to her first loves - photography and Yorkshire. The family moved to Tollerton near York in 1974 where Tracy developed a passion for this area and she has lived in the County ever since except for short periods of time away at University and for work. Armed with a Photography Diploma from the Photography Institute and with several exhibitions of her work under her belt, she now aims to teach enthusiastic amateur photographers how to improve their skills in the stunning surroundings of the Yorkshire Wolds.
She said: “Having experienced trying to learn how to take pictures with a decent camera, and getting quickly overwhelmed with all the technical jargon, I realised that the vast majority of people just need to be taught how to get the most out of their camera using simple uncomplicated language, and to move away from relying on automatic settings on their camera.”
A range of photography courses is now available at Yorkshire Wolds Photography and Glamping, including courses for absolute beginners and those ‘moving on from auto’, as well as Fun with Photography, and Photographing Dogs. There will also be a Kids’ Club starting in the school summer holidays for children aged 10-17 – unique in the area.
The courses can be booked as single days or cater for people wanting to stay for longer. Later in the year, and subject to necessary approvals, the new venture will offer glamping in converted railway wagons located beside the photographic studio in Weaverthorpe. In the meantime, people wanting to stay overnight can book accommodation at one of the village’s two pubs offering bed and breakfast.
Tracy said: “Yorkshire Wolds Photography and Glamping is a chance for me to pursue my love of photography, and share it with others. My aim is to make the two sides of this new business work for each other – renovating the wagons to become glamping accommodation is a great use of the asset, and will hugely complement the photography side of the business because we can offer residential courses.”
Tracy and Karyn say their target market is people using their first digital SLR or bridge camera who are unsure how to get the best out of it. Everyone attending will benefit from learning in small groups, and the chance to get out and about in the area, whether on the dramatic Yorkshire Coast (including the RSPB reserve at Bempton cliffs), the medieval village of Wharram Percy, a visit to Castle Howard, or the beauty of the Yorkshire Wolds to name just a few.
Tracy said: “I have been on too many photography courses which are simply too big, with too many students – here, we will meet individual needs, with realistic group sizes”.
Bookings are now being taken for photography courses. The full calendar of courses, with booking details, can be found at www.yorkshire-wolds.org.uk