Local photographer wins highly commended at National Historic awards

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WARRINGTON photographer, John Eyres, has been awarded Highly Commended in the Photographer of the Year Competition with his image, Danny on the Weaver.

National Historic Ships UK’s annual awards ceremony is a celebration of maritime heritage around UK coasts, lakes, and rivers. It encourages people of all ages and backgrounds to engage with static and operational historic vessels through photography, volunteering, conservation, online activities and skills-based training.

The event was filmed at Boathouse 4 in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and featured special guest presenters lecturer, writer and broadcaster Paul Atterbury and historian Sam Willis.

The accolade of Photographer of the Year 2021 went to Fraser Gray after his image Thames Sailing Barges was chosen from hundreds of entries to scoop the winning prize of £500 vouchers of the winner’s choice, and a classic smock.

Commenting on the winning image, judge Simon Stephens said: “This picture demonstrates the lovely artistic balance of the sailing and moored Thames barges in silhouette against the striking light conditions with shimmering reflections on the estuary waters.”

The winner of the Classic Boat category went to Sandy Miller for his image Ethel Alice & Besom Fleet. Moment of beauty.

Classic Boat Magazine editor and judge, Steffan Meyric-Hughes commented: “Reflection shots like this are a staple of marine photography but rarely if ever have we seen one as good as this. The sea is as flat as a mirror which, together with the timing, must have taken some planning. The joy of this photo is, of course, the clarity of reflection of the smacks’ rigs in the water. But there is also some nice composition at play here, with the masts and their reflections converging as they near the horizon, giving the image a pleasing geometric aspect.”

The competition was strong with outstanding submissions from a wide range of entrants. The judging panel was delighted to see both professional and amateur photographers represented, although to ensure fairness these details are not disclosed when selecting the best photographs.

The 2021 Photography Competition was supported by Adlard Coles, Axis 12, Beckett Rankine, IBTC Lowestoft, Park Lane Press, Yarmouth Oilskins, Winter & Co and Classic Boat magazine.  The venue for the Awards Ceremony was provided courtesy of the Portsmouth Naval Base Property Trust.

2021 Photography Competition winners:
Overall Winner: Thames Sailing Barges, by Fraser Gray from Gravesend, Kent.
Highly Commended: Danny on the Weaver, by John Eyres from Warrington, Cheshire.
Classic Boat Winner: Ethel Alice & Besom Fleet. Moment of beauty, by Sandy Miller from Chelmsford, Essex.
Classic Boat Highly Commended: On the deck of Blue Peter, by Ed Whiting from Dilton Marsh, Wiltshire.
Newcomer of the Year Joint: Ebb and Flow, by Raymond Carruthers from Killearn, Stirlingshire.
Newcomer of the Year Joint: The RRS Discovery, Orion and the V&A, by Kuljit Athwal from Broughty Ferry, Dundee.
People’s Choice Winner: The Boat at Thornham, by Gary Holford from Halesowen, West Midlands.

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