Gary’s Friends


‘Gary’s Friends’ is a series of 40 pictures of a community of substance misusers, their families and carers in County Durham and Middlesbrough. The project was commissioned by the County Durham Drugs and Alcohol Action Unit with the aim of raising awareness of the particular difficulties faced by families in which there is a problem of substance misuse. The pictures were taken between 2004 and 2007 and the book of the series, together with interviews with each of the subjects, was published in September 2007. The pictures have been widely exhibited and some of them were used as the backdrop to the Home Office National Drugs Strategy in 2005. A video montage of the pictures was shown at the Gala Theatre in Durham in 2008 as part of the Durham Arts Festival. Below are links to a few of the pictures. More information can be found on the book website,

Here are some links to reviews and discussion of Gary’s Friends:

Richard Morrison in The Times

Young People Now

Guardian Weekend

NHS Press Release

Northern Echo

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