During the past two weeks I have been fortunate to see a total of 7 male Purple Emperor (Apatura iris) during visits to two separate local commons, including one individual flying just twenty feet above my head, but once again the only photo opportunities were males perched extremely high up on their Oak master trees. I am still hopeful that one day I might get one in the frame at a much lower altitude!
Indications from one local site (Ashtead Common) are that there are very good numbers of Purple Emperor on the wing this year so I'll definitely be going back subject to a spell of suitable weather.
For the other species, the small Purple Hairstreak (Neozephyrus quercus) I stumbled across a single individual, probably a female, perched just a foot off the ground on the leaf of a Birch sapling on Bookham Common, and managed just one decent shot of its silvery under-wing (see below) before it disappeared from view.
All images were taken 'handheld' with the 450D and 70-300mm lens. FAB.