A BOATING enthusiast from Warrington and a 15-year-old Shropshire schoolboy are the winners of a new photographic competition launched by the Canal & River Trust.
The competition was looking for imaginative and evocative photographs that depict ‘Life on the Waterways’ across North Wales, Cheshire and Shropshire.
Derek Quilliam, from Stockton Heath, was awarded first prize for a delightful image which shows his wife and daughter pulling on the ropes of hire boat Holly Day on a day trip cruising along the Shropshire Union Canal in Cheshire.
Young photographer Tom Morrison, a pupil at William Brookes School in Much Wenlock, was winner in the Under 16 category. His winning photo captures a flotilla of boats travelling along the historic Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, near Llangollen in North Wales.
The prizes were vouchers for photographic equipment. Brenda Harvey, chairman of the Trust’s North Wales & Borders Waterway Partnership, said: “We were delighted to receive dozens of stunning images as entries into our first regional waterway photographic competition. The standard was very high and the judges had a difficult job choosing the best photographs.
“Both our first prize winners, Derek and Tom, are first class photographers and their love of our waterways shines through in the pictures they submitted. Both winning photographs show people enjoying the canals. Our aim was to capture images that reflect the natural and man-made waterway environments and draw out what they mean to people and communities. Our winners have done that very successfully.”
Derek, who is a member of Warrington Photo Society and hired his boat from Cheshire Cat Narrowboats based at Overwater Marina, was surprised and delighted to win.
He said: We sailed to Barbridge for lunch, returning early evening. The weather was absolutely perfect. The photo shows my daughter and my wife reining in Holly Day when mooring it. I thought the photo depicted the enjoyment of canal boating, and I am very pleased it was chosen by the judges, hopefully for that reason.
“I have photographed canals and canal craft a lot in recent years, including craft on the River Weaver. I am always on the lookout for buildings and waterway structures that depict an age long ago.”
Tom, who lives in Much Wenlock, was equally delighted to win. The competition inspired him and his family to explore their local waterways and they were so impressed with what they discovered, they’ve vowed to become more frequent visitors.
Tom added: “I aspire to spend my career in the creative media industry. I’ve been passionate about photography and filmmaking for four years and during that time I have learnt a huge amount about the wonders of the photographic art.
“I believe that photography is a unique way in which we can capture moments and emotion. Earlier this year, I was shortlisted for the Bristol Science Film Festival and I am always looking for opportunities to spend more time photographing and to further my understanding. The competition from the Canal & River Trust was a brilliant way to do this and I am delighted to have been recognised for what I love doing.”