IT was a chance encounter with David Attenborough on the Antarctic back in the late Seventies that sealed Doug Allen’s fate.
At the time he was a young marine biologist working as a diver and researcher for the British Antarctic Survey but when a call came through to his research team that Attenborough and his film crew wanted to make a stopover during their trip on HMS Endurance he jumped at the chance of meeting them.
And when the great natural history man himself told Doug he had a special talent, he decided to make a go of becoming a wildlife cameraman himself.
Since that auspicious day Doug has worked on a number of top wildlife TV series, including Blue Planet,Planet Earth, Frozen Planet and Ocean Giants — and his mentor now refers to him as “the toughest in the business”.
Doug Allen will be coming back to Henley for the second time in May to give a lecture at the Kenton Theatre about his encounters with some of nature’s greatest beasts — including polar bears and killer whales — in a talk called In The Company of Giants.