Putting Nidderdale in the picture

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The winners of the photographic competition My Nidderdale, hosted by Visit Harrogate and the Nidderdale AONB office, have been revealed.

Nidderdale AONB is an area of 233 square miles and is home to iconic sights and attractions, including Brimham Rocks, Fountain’s Abbey, Coldstones Cut and How Stean Gorge.

Out of a shortlist of 16, three winners and a Highly Commended were chosen by the judging panel.

Head judge, acclaimed photographer, Paul Harris, said: “As a freelance photographer, I have been living and working in Nidderdale for 20 years.

“Its landscape and culture have regularly featured in my photography and I have enjoyed working closely with the Nidderdale AONB over several years providing advice and photographic content.”

In first place was Solstice Sunrise by Tony Dallimore, second Biking near Lofthouse by Graham Weaver, third Moonrise at Brimham by Kelvin Smith, Highly Commended Brimham crows at sunset by Graham Weaver.

Richard Spencer, CEO of Visit Harrogate, said: “Our district is so proud to be home to an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

“We boast one of the UK’s most beautiful and protected landscapes, alongside species and habitats that are internationally important. These photos will help showcase to the world the beauty on our doorstep.”

An exhibition of the winning entries will be hosted at the Pump Rooms in Harrogate this November, details to be announced.

Paul Harris started his career after studying documentary photography under Magnum photographer, David Hurn.

His work has been published in major publications including the Sunday Times, BBC Countryfile Magazine and Geographical Magazine.

He added: “I was honoured to be invited to judge the shortlisted images for their first photo competition highlighting the dale and all it has to offer.

“What struck me immediately was the diversity of images from close up wildlife to wide vistas of the landscape, and it was great to see some photographers experimenting with black and white, slow shutter speeds and working in adverse weather conditions, which can often add real character and strength to an image.

“While many of the entries were focusing on some of Nidderdale’s iconic landscapes such as Brimham, it was also great to see images looking at quieter and lesser known parts of the dale.”

Sarah Kettlewell, AONB Manager, said: “We hope these photos will inspire people to get out into Nidderdale and explore all it has to offer.

“People are at the heart of our work to protect, safeguard and promote the AONB, and we want visitors to experience our countryside, to treasure it and help it thrive.”

Results:

First - Solstice Sunrise by Tony Dallimore.

Tony Dallimore said: “This image was taken on a cold morning around the time of the 2017 winter solstice. I find The Coldstones Cut such an inspiring monument. The endless panoramas, the instillation and the clear sight of sunrise and sunset offer so many opportunities for creativity all year round. I submitted this picture on the basis of a cracking sunrise, on snow, presenting its location through the name stone and iconic bike.”

Second - Biking near Lofthouse by Graham Weaver.

Graham Weaver said: “The photo was taken while out biking from Pateley Bridge to Stean and back with the Nidderdale Adventure Club in March this year. Cold toes and fingers were warmed up during a stop for tea and bacon butties at How Stean Gorge cafe.”

Third - Moonrise at Brimham by Kelvin Smith.

Kelvin Smith said: “I have always been attracted by the timeless nature of Brimham Rocks which is particularly evident at dawn and dusk when, like all monumental geological features, it has the power to evoke thoughts of that shared experience that connects us with a bygone age, an emotion altogether heightened by the rising moon.”

Highly Commended - Brimham crows at sunset by Graham Weaver

The photo was taken at Brimham Rocks in January 2017. Graham Weaver said: “As the sun was setting there were several crows circling around and cawing as they settled down for the night. The scene struck me as one that had played out many thousands of times over the millennia since Brimham Rocks were formed.”

To view the full shortlist go to: https://nidderdaleaonb.org.uk/events/photography-competition-jun-to-aug-2018/