Norfolk Wildlife Trust has announced the winners of their nature photography competition for 2023. Over 600 photographs were submitted, showing the stunning variety of wildlife that calls Norfolk home.
Paul Richards’ image of hares in the snow was chosen as the Judges’ Overall Favourite. Amelia Jane Balls earned the well-deserved title of Best Young Photographer for her image of a hare in the spring sunshine. Each of these lucky winners received a pair of binoculars from competition sponsors ZEISS' new SFL (SmartFocus Lightweight) range, worth over £1200.
Both winning images and 10 runners up have been featured in Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s annual calendar, with the proceeds going towards supporting the charity’s conservation work. The calendar is available to purchase from all Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s Visitor Centres at Hickling Broad, Ranworth Broad, Holme Dunes and Cley Marshes, for £9.00.
The competition was judged by: conservationist and wildlife presenter, Jess French; wildlife photographer and cameraman Josh Jaggard; wildlife presenter, conservationist and author Ajay Tegala; and Norfolk-based photographer Paula Cooper.
Ajay Tegala said: "There was such a wealth of fantastic photographs, choosing was a challenge but also an absolute pleasure. The winning image captures a unique moment in time, in very wintry weather. As well as admiring the beautiful hares in the snowy landscape, you can really imagine the patience and layers of warm clothing that were required to take the photograph.
“Helping judge really highlighted what a rich and wonderful variety of nature Norfolk has... and what a talented group of photographers spend time to respectfully capture it!"
Paula Cooper said: “I loved the winning image, it was very atmospheric, taken in falling snow and showing the interaction of the hares. It stood out from the usual hare shots taken in spring.
The standard of the entries was great, really celebrating the wildlife we have in Norfolk, making it so difficult to judge.”
Winners and runners up are as follows:
The Judges’ Overall Favourite Photograph, taken by Paul Richards.
“The hares were taken in one of our winter storms when the Beast from the East transformed our winter landscapes. The hares were chasing each other across the windswept landscape and I captured the drama as one hare watched the others try to escape.”
Best Young Photographer, photo taken by Amelia Jane Balls, aged 11.
“This photo of a hare warming up in the sunshine was taken whilst on a circular walk in Potter Heigham”
Runners up: Heather Hipson, Tim Harris, Jon Kelf, John Boyle, Daniel Masters, Nick Appleton, Gillian Thompson, Clive Burns, Daniel Leadley