Amongst the varied and exciting things which will be happening at the Anima Event at Brockenhurst Village Community Centre from 10 a.m.- 5 pm on Saturday 30th September is a celebration of the lives of two pioneers in their field who with very different skills have helped us all understand what is happening in the natural world.
Eric Ashby, the film-maker and Heathcote Williams the poet and playwright were both moved by an intense love of nature.
Eric Ashby (1918 – 2003) shared his love of the New Forest with the world through his wildlife films. He believed that wild animals should be filmed behaving naturally, and his high standards of still photography and film-making in the wild became his hallmark.
Eric worked on many wildlife programmes for the BBC Natural History Unit. He was an extraordinarily patient man, visiting a site on 90 occasions to record just one minute of film about a badger. He was the first to capture the behaviour of badgers in daylight and also developed soundproof camera boxes that allowed him to get close to deer without the animals taking fright.
In the early 1960s, his films brought delight and wonder to viewers of the BBC’s popular series Look, which was presented by Sir Peter Scott. So impressed was Scott by Eric’s remarkably intimate close-ups of wild forest animals that he dubbed him the Silent Watcher.