Alistair Deacon

Alistair Deacon, founder and creator of the Appleslade Archive, at his family's stables, New Forest, Hampshire, 30th November 2013

Alistair Deacon, founder and creator of the Appleslade Archive, at his family’s stables, New Forest, Hampshire, 30th November 2013

Alistair Deacon, founder of The Appleslade Archive, has grown up in the farming region of West Hampshire, England.

Having been a keen photographer from a very young age, Alistair decided to move from Photography being a hobby and decided to begin turning it into a career. After completing his Photography A Levels in Hampshire he went on to The Arts University College Bournemouth to study for his Diploma in Photography. After gaining his Diploma, Alistair moved to Falmouth, Cornwall in order to attend Falmouth University on their BA (Hons) Press & Editorial Photography course. Once Alistair has attained his Degree he hopes to study for his Masters and eventually complete a PhD in Photography.

Back in Hampshire, Alistair’s family run a Dairy farm consisting of 80 head of Pedigree Holstein Friesian cattle. Having been brought up in this environment Alistair has a great deal of interest, knowledge and passion for farming and hopes to one day continue the family tradition of farming cattle, a tradition which goes back generations. With an Artist/Farmer for a Mother and a Veterinary Surgeon/Farmer for a Father, Alistair has had a creative up-bringing and his interest in photography has always been encouraged by his family.

Alistair was first introduced to the workings of the New Forest and the Commoners* by his wife, Rebecca (A working, practicing Commoner whose family have been Commoning since the 17th Century). Interested in this struggling trade, he began learning about the traditional methods of ‘Running Animals on Forest’, ‘Branding’ and ‘Drifting’ and started documenting the traditions that are under threat. With his farming background, Alistair has seen first hand how techniques and tricks which used to be passed down from generation to generation are dying out and the knowledge is being lost.

To contact Alistair directly with any enquiry please email:




* For more information and a definition of ‘Commoners’ please refer to our ‘About The Archive’ segment, located above.

2 thoughts on “Alistair Deacon

  1. Hi Ali, love the landscapes, and the baby animal pictures, especially Lindwude Tansy and foal in such a natural setting. Very worthwhile project, you are right, there are a lot of countryside skills and traditions disappearing, but also more people realising that these ways of life are the keys to modern buzzwords such as sustainability, food miles and low carbon footprint.
    Can you do a page specially for seasonal colour, such as autumn browns, summer sunshine, spring greens and cold winter blues? A chap of your obvious talent would be able to deal with the complex issues of colour with great sensitivity: we all want to see that side of your work too!

    • For the moment The Appleslade Archive will be staying in black and white. Whether or not that will change in the future? Only time will tell. For now, at least, colour work and work not related to The Appleslade Archive can be viewed on my blog here:

      The Archive is, of course, still in the early stages, but I hope over time to comprehensively cover all aspects of rural life in the South West.

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