Alex - When I was 26 I got married to a beautiful woman. Jill. Jill from Nuneaton. We had three boys.
- I used to be a painter.
- Jill died of cancer not long after and I moved to London. Got a few odd jobs here and there but never really found my way.
- People walk past day in day out giving you shit. 'Get a job...bugger off,' and worse. It's the looks you get and the looks you dont get, like you don't exist. But I do have a job. I sell the Big Issue. May not be the most glamorous but it's a bloody job. I buy a product and sell it to those willing to buy.
- You get a lot of assholes yes but there are some kind people. On average it's not so great but there are good souls.
And besides, if they don't like me, they love my little buddy here.
- I met someone special. Jully-Anne. We've been together for 12 years. I hope to get married next year. I'll have to give up the Big Issue. I would love to get back into my painting. Jules would like me to as well. -
I met Alex and his dog Boo in Camden in 2008. I saw him several times thereafter but I haven't seen him at his usual spot since 2009. Hopefully he's painting again.
Rough sleeping is on the rise in England. From 2010 - end of 2016, the number of people sleeping rough in England has increased by an estimated 134%. The City of London lists 0300 500 0914 as the number to call if you come across someone in need of assistance.