Ah, the post-GCSE prom. The last hurrah, the glitz, the glamour… kind of. If your prom was anything like ours, it might have involved a stretch limo, an ill-fitting suit and a fiver bottle of vodka decanted into a hip flask. Good times.
For this group of school kids from East London, though, prom ’23 was turbo-charged.
“Three months ago I was driving through Tower Hamlets with a friend and we passed a convoy of luxury supercars,” says Jack Kenyon, a photographer who has captured cat shows, muscleheads, D Block Europe fans and UK rappers’ go-to jewellers in Hatton Garden. “[My friend] explained it was Eid, and that some communities in the borough celebrate the day by hiring extravagant cars. I did some Googling and learnt that it’s quite common amongst the Bengali [and Bangladeshi] communities in Tower Hamlets to celebrate important events with supercars, especially Eid, weddings and prom.”
Kenyon reached out to supercar supplier Imperial Xotic Motors and, after a bit of phone chat, was directed towards a group of school leavers who were about to celebrate the end of year 11, big style.
“The teenagers were all too young to drive, so they were chauffeured to their prom and after it finished, they continued their celebrations in a local retail park,” explains Kenyon. At around 6pm, when the prommers were in full pre-party swing, Kenyon approached the group, camera in hand. “They were all pretty excited to be photographed with their cars,” he recalls. “I’d never seen or heard of a prom celebration quite like it. Around the UK, it’s fairly common to see leavers arriving and leaving in limos. But travelling in bright green Lamborghinis and modded German whips is unique. That should be celebrated.”
And celebrate they did. All suited and booted, the fresh-faced 16-year-olds let off flares, posed good and proper, and got their first whiff of post-adolescence freedom in a retail park; a revved-up rite of passage.
“For this once-in-a-lifetime event, it’s fun to indulge in feeling glamorous, important and grown-up,” Kenyon says. “It’s a luxury experience that makes the day feel extra special and this also, hopefully, makes for memorable photos to look back on.”
Time to dig out our own prom photos, we reckon. Actually, forget it.
You know what’s even cooler than posing next to a truly excellent luxury car? Driving it safely. So don’t be a wally, stick to the speed limit, and make sure you stay safe, kapeesh?