Leamington mum to launch photography exhibition which challenges preconceptions of down syndrome

Tom Enoch. Photo by Nicola Enoch.
Tom Enoch. Photo by Nicola Enoch.

Challenging preconceptions of down syndrome is the aim of a Leamington mum who is holding a photography exhibition at Warwick University in December.

Nicola Enoch is the founder of The Ups of Downs which was established in 2006, and is based in Leamington Spa.

The charity has been celebrating Down syndrome in Warwickshire and surrounding counties for the last 11 years and works with more than 60 families.

The exhibition features dozens of children aged from a few weeks to 12 years old who have the condition.

The photographs show children dressing up in their favourite clothes - or doing some of their favourite things and aims to emphasise the uniqueness of each child and encourage viewers to see past the diagnosis and see each child’s individual skills and interests.

Nicola’s own son Tom, 12, is among those to feature in the exhibition.

She said: “When Tom was born I knew nothing about Down Syndrome and I’d been brought up in a society led to believe that children with the condition aren’t worthy.

“You don’t really get told otherwise until you’re in that situation yourself.”

Down Syndrome, also known as Down’s Syndrome, is a genetic condition which affects an estimated 775 babies born each year.

Dr Clare Blackburn, principal teaching fellow, mental health and wellbeing, at Warwick Medical School said: “At Warwick Medical School parents, patients and health services users are actively involved in teaching our students.

“We view this is as central to producing doctors who can provide person-centred, high quality care for patients.

“Working with The Ups of Downs charity will help our students develop positive attitudes to people with Down Syndrome and to understand how to provide better support for them and their families.”

The exhibition launch which is taking place at the Medical School on Gibbet Hill Road on December 5 from 1pm and is open to the public.

To attend the exhibition or for more information visit https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/med/news/eventsandopendays/upsofdowns