Forgotten Heritage: Matt Emmett

Matt Emmett is an adventurous photographer, who traverses into the unknown to capture breath taking forgotten heritage.

About Matt

After a chance encounter with an abandoned jet engine testing establishment, Matt Emmett was drawn into the world of abandoned location photography. He became hooked on the fascinating back stories and atmospheric sense of place and history at the locations he visited. Capturing and bringing these stories into peoples homes via his social channels has evolved into over a decade long project titled, 'Forgotten Heritage'.

The resulting catalogue features award-winning images from a myriad of locations such as the crumbling shells of Italy’s abandoned villas and asylums to the raw spectacle of Belgium’s rusting industrial remnants, and everything inbetween. Immense and powerful beauty is revealed in the images he brings back from places long forgotten by humans. The images, although produced primarily as art also form an important collection with regards to visual preservation of our built environment and heritage, many of the places Matt has captured have since been demolished.

View portfolio

Explore Matt's photographs of Reading:

Matt's Awards and Achievements Speak for Themselves:

Explore Matt's many formal awards, both national and international, below:

Visual Art Open 2021

Overall Winner - Indoor Rainbow
A colourful long exposure taken inside a vacant prison wing placed 1st in one of the UK’s major national art awards.

British Photography Awards 2020

Peoples choice winner - Ironworks Culvert
This image taken inside a subterranean culvert below an historic ironworks site in Somerset won the peoples choice award at the British Photography Awards.

Historic Photographer of the Year 2017

Overall Winner - Abandoned Hospital Corridor
This image of a long corridor at an abandoned ex US military hospital in Lincolnshire won the inaugural HPotY in 2017.

Blueprint Magazine Architectural Photographer of the Year 2017

2nd Place - Chateau Ruins
This image of an abandoned Belgian chateau came 2nd in Blueprint Magazine’s inaugural architectural photography award.

Sony World Photography Awards 2016

Highly commended - The Invisible World
An infrared shot of an old Cotswolds folly made the highly commended list for this widely entered and tricky to place in international award.

Architectural Photographer of the Year 2016

Overall Winner - Subterranean Cistern
This image of a Victorian covered reservoir below London was chosen as overall winner by the delegates of the Berlin Festival of Architecture.

North Valley Art League International Photography Show 2016

Overall Winner - Patient Records
An image of storage cabinets and patient treatment records scattered across the floor at a long abandoned psychiatric hospital in northern Italy won the NVAL award (a California based international award) in 2016.

Wiki Loves Monuments Belgium & Luxembourg 2016

Overall Winner - Coal Mine, Hasard de Cheratte
This image of a rather grand looking coal mine near Liege, placed first in the Belgium chapter of the most entered photography competition in 2016.

North Valley Art League International Photography Show 2014

2nd Place - Abandoned Farm Kitchen
An image of this old range cooker inside a rustic kitchen at an abandoned farmhouse in Luxembourg placed 2nd in the NVAL award in 2014.

Wiki Loves Monuments UK 2013

2nd Place - Flooded Pumping Station
An image of the flooded C Station at Abbey Mills pumping station in East London. Placing 2nd in the UK chapter of Wiki Loves Monuments in 2013.