Hi I'm Charlotte, I'm 34 years old, I'm a skateboarder ( old timer these days ) and skateboard photographer.
I started skating at 16 years old but really found my skate home in Leeds, where I spent my University life.
Hyde Park, Leeds was my home for most of my 20's, this is where I spent days taking some really hard slams for months just trying to ollie up a curb! The lads I spent most days with, would be constantly picking me up off the floor.
A few years went by and I had managed to learn to boardslide a small rail, this was the only "wow" trick I could do for months, so I was given the nickname 'Charlie Boardslide'. It stuck and now thats my name among some of my closet friends.
As time went on I grew more and more confident through skating everyday, I started to learn heel flips, I could ollie off blocks and up curbs but my favourite time skating was through the University to classes. There is something so free about cruising the streets on your board, especially on a summers day in Leeds.
Leeds was the best time of my life skating but as mentioned in my talk last Saturday at House of Vans London, I was the only regular girl skater in Leeds for nearly 10 years. Girls were dotted all over the country but it was word of mouth via the guys that I would hear of another girl skater in the area or from another city.
Lois Pendlebury was a northern lass but she was away so I never got to skate with her until the last few months of my time in Leeds.
Jenna Selby, another amazing photographer had organised a Girl Skate Tour - called Mega Mission this was the first time I got to meet any other female skaters at that time.
After many years in Leeds I decided to move to Barcelona where I lived with Maria Falbo, she was a skater from Manchester at the time, we met through friends and just clicked so moved in with her. It was an amazing experience, a completely different culture to what I was used to, so laid back and people skated very late at night, Macba was the go to place then.
We lived a few flats away from JB Gillet, one of my heroes at the time. We would often see pro skaters cruising the streets and hanging out, it was so exciting to a young skater back then to hang out with your idols as if it was normal. I had to be very cool and relaxed you know!
(Below is my only video part from my time in Leeds, remember we had no social media back then.)
When I came back from Barcelona, I moved to London to start my career in Fashion. I was a shoot producer for many years for Topshop and Topman. Skating took a back seat during this time however most Saturdays I would go to Mile End skatepark for a mini cruise to keep the old legs working!
Once I got the big city out of my system, I decided to move back to the countryside, Hereford where I was born. The skatepark was voted by the lovely Lucy Adams as one of the best in the country. So if you ever get the chance come down and see me.
A few years back now, I cracked my coccyx skating the bowl it was then I couldn't skateboard anymore, this was when the dark times became real. I had hit rock bottom and one of my old friends said to me, why don't you start taking pictures of skateboarding to keep in with the scene and still see your friends.
So I did and the rest is history.
I still skate but only cruise these days but I still love it and I cannot wait for the Summer.
(Below are some images taken of me in BCN days, me and JB Gillet, Mega Mission Tour, meeting the Nefarious Crew and shooting Stef in Plymouth for my feature in Sidewalk Magazine. )