• Ruth Towell

Lockdown Reflections - Ajay

Updated: Jun 19

As we are standing on the turning point of the lockdown being eased in the UK, I decided to embark on a new portrait project. Capturing this moment in time, with reflections from individuals about this season and thoughts about how a post-lockdown world might look.

Each portrait is a window into an individual's life, shot through the window of their home capturing the invisible separation that lockdown brings.

This is Ajay, have a read of his story:

'I’m a chef and business owner and I’ve been sharing lockdown with my wife, three children and tons of people on Zoom.

Life has been really tough, mental health is real. It’s been hard seeing friends and family losing their close ones and struggling for other reasons.

My business, Banjaraa was created from my desire to share authentic Indian Street food with people. 2020 was set to be our biggest year yet. We were fully booked across multiple events throughout the summer and had begun to scout locations for our new permanent base, the Banjaraa deli. The rapid spread of COVID-19 and subsequent lockdown decimated our income stream. Despite this, I somehow found this strength to keep going and to keep my ‘Indian-inspired’ catering business, Banjaraa alive.

I decided to run a crowdfunding campaign to try and keep my business going. People could ‘pay it forward’ by purchasing reward vouchers to be used once we started serving food again. We even had a reward option which could be used in lockdown where I would teach someone to make the perfect masala! The local support in one form or another has been amazing and we raised enough to get back on our feet again.

The crowdfunding showed me how many people were behind me all this time. They have my backup whenever they need it.

I’m not sure how the world will look after lockdown. Mother Earth has definitely had a break. I think every country should have a week or two lockdown once a year, give the Earth the break it needs!'

You can find out more about Ajay's crowdfunding campaign for Banjaraa or have a look at his new 'heat at home' menu on his website: https://banjaraa.co.uk/

Stay up to date with this project by following me on social media: instagram.com/ruth.towell / facebook.com/RuthTowellPhotography or subscribing to blog email updates in the box at the bottom of this page.

If you are interested in taking part in this project and live in the Peterborough area, drop me an email: ruthtowellprojects@gmail.com

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© 2020 Ruth Towell