Farewell Tony Benn

It has just been announced that elder statesman Tony Benn has died aged 88.

Tony was a left wing politician of great principles and a brilliant speaker, a man who made you think.

Wether or not you agreed with him, he wanted to make you think.

A firebrand in his day who stood up for what he believed in at any cost, in later years he was out of step with the Labour party which was so dear to him.

He wanted to be an MP but this meant renouncing his peerage, effectively a gift from the queen, something that was unheard of.

Famously when he left politics he said he was 'leaving parliament to spend more time in politics'

His diary which he kept daily since 1940 gave an insightful view into the world of politics.

Voted on the BBC politics show as 'The UK's Political Hero' ahead of Mrs Thatcher.

I photographed him in his flat in Holland Park late last year.

His flat was packed with memories of a great life lived.

Before I left I asked him if he could give one piece of advice, what would it be?

He paused, mulling over what I had asked him before replying

'Say what you mean, mean what you say and do it if you can'

Wise words indeed.

*note, I shot this image on the amazing Carl Zeiss 55mm Otus lens at F1.4. I will be posting a comparative test review shortly of this remarkable lens.