Steve Wharton PLEASE CREDIT Michael Hirs

Steve studied Media at Cumbria College of Art & Design (1997-9). He subsequently worked as a film stills photographer for directors Ian D Fleming and Neil Marshall. He also worked for Cumbrian Arts-in-Education and the Royal Opera House Education Department, documenting outreach projects in Cumbria and Covent Garden. Between 2002 and 2007, he was involved in the production of several low-budget films in an exciting period of independent production by artists around the Furness Peninsular (The Egg, Shallow, Paperlad, Gan Yam).

In 2019 he was asked to direct a promo video for a exhibition at a local museum. The exhibition was on loan from Jorvik Viking Centre and Steve assembled a team of volunteer film-makers and performers at Moorforge Viking Settlement near Cockermouth, Cumbria. 

In 2019 and 2020 he stepped in front of the camera to present stories from Helvellyn for Terry Abraham's third Life of a Mountain documentary. Steve researched and wrote the script for his scenes which appear in the Cinematic/DVD and TV versions. Cinema release: Dec 2020, TV release: Jan 2021 (BBC4)

​In 2021, Steve made At Home In The Steep Places, a feature-length documentary about Maryport-born miner, climber and artist Bill Peascod. The film charts Bill's life from a challenging childhood in the Cumberland coalfields and involvement in the mines rescue teams at Lowca and William Pit disasters to his pioneering of new rock climbing routes in 1940s Buttermere.

He became an abstract landscape painter after emigrating to Australia in 1952 where he developed 'burnt' paintings. He returned to Cumbria in 1980 and drew on Japanese influences to paint his beloved fells, which he had resumed climbing with new friends such as Bill Birkett, Sir Chris Bonington and Don Whillans.


Filmed in England, Australia and Japan, the film is presented by Steve Wharton, Natalie Wilson and Perrin Walker. It features interviews with people who knew Bill, climbing and art specialists, rare archive material, photographs by the Abraham Brothers and a soundtrack by Cumbrian and Australian musicians.

At Home In The Steep Places is available to watch for free on the Mountain Heritage Trust YouTube channel and is available for community groups and venues to show for on the proviso that a small donation from tickets sales is made to a cause within the ethos of the film. A list of upcoming screenings is below. Please check out the trailer below and feel free to download the full film and press pack below.

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Want to host your own screening of At Home In The Steep Places?