20 years on: Bolton photographer's lasting snapshot of 9/11

On the 20th anniversary of the September 11 terror attacks in the United States, a photographer from Bolton has been reflecting on his experience in the hours after the atrocities.

Don Tonge was in New York for a sight-seeing trip when the planes hit the twin towers and he was able to capture the aftermath on his camera.

Now 71, Mr Tonge explained how he learned about the attack on television and saw smoke coming out of the tower.

Smoke rises from Ground Zero as people stand in disbelief Credit: Don Tonge

Don headed towards Ground Zero with his camera and began to capture the aftermath of the attacks.

He recalled, "A restaurant opened up. They were putting sandwiches and water out for people. it was dusty and they wanted a drink.

"Then I saw a woman scraping dust from an NYPC SUV. She said 'This is history. I want a piece of it.' I thought this is sick, but it shows the two extremes of people's behaviours."

Cups of water lined up outside a New York restaurant Credit: Don Tonge

Don had booked to go for a meal in the World Trade Centre just hours after the attack.

He shudders to think about what could have happened.

People huddle around a sports car listening for updates on its radio Credit: Don Tonge

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Don says he was haunted by his memory of being asked to try to reach a man who hadn't been heard of since the attacks.

He called the man's mobile phone numerous times, concerned the man was lying beneath the rubble.

Don later discovered the man had been found in temporary accommodation.

A police car covered in dust in the aftermath of the attacks Credit: Don Tonge

Don would like to return to New York before the 25th anniversary to finish his trip.

The photographer's close-up experience has stayed etched in his memory.

His candid pictures will remain a record of one of the most infamous events in our time.