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New photography exhibition celebrates characters of the Thames

A photography exhibition celebrating the people who use the River Thames in London every day is launching in the heart of the capital.

'River People', an exhibition by Wandsworth-based photographer Matthew Joseph, documents the lives of people who use the tidal River Thames for work, leisure or travel. Supported by Tideway, the company behind the Thames Tideway Tunnel 'super sewer', it will be launched at the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) in Westminster on Thursday (21 April).

Matthew said: "Both as a photographer and as a Londoner, I have a great appreciation for the River Thames. Not only is it a hub of activity and crucial to our capital's existence, but it also provides ever-changing inspiration for my work.

"I'm of the opinion that the river is often overlooked and undervalued by the 8.6 million inhabitants and many more commuters that exist in London. Shooting the River People series was a chance for me to humanise the waterway and expose the many varied characters that make up the collective face of the tidal Thames - hopefully increasing awareness in the process."

Phil Stride, External Affairs Director at Tideway, said: "Matthew's photos perfectly capture the vast amount of opportunities London's river provides - for leisure, recreation, employment and much more. We are delighted to be supporting Matthew in launching this exhibition in central London, just around the corner from the river it celebrates."

Nathan Baker, ICE Director of Engineering Knowledge said: "The Thames is London’s defining feature – meandering past the capital's homes, halls of power, pillars of culture and centres of global business. Matthew's collection reminds us that the river is enjoyed by many, and demonstrates why we must care for it for sake of future generations.

"Delivered by a multi-disciplinary team, including civil engineers, the Tideway project will help revitalise the Thames by adding capacity to London's straining sewerage network. River People helps cast the mind forward to the project's completion by telling the human story of London's intimate relationship with the river. We are delighted to be hosting such an evocative and compelling exhibition."

River People will run from Friday, 22 April to Friday, 3 June in the Library of One Great George Street. It will be open to the public free of charge, Monday to Friday from 10am to 6pm.