These incredible snaps capture the magic of the sea

National maritime charity, the Shipwrecked Mariners’ Society, has announced the winners of its eighth annual photography competition…

…and the pictures are quite something.

The snaps capture various aspects of the UK’s historic relationship with the sea and this year the competition received more than 2,000 entries – a new record.

Laurence Hartwell scooped the overall prize for his photo titled Beam Trawlers Landing To The Fish Market At Night, which shows trawlers with their catches at a fishmarket in Newlyn, Cornwall. The photo won the amateur photographer a £500 prize voucher for photographic equipment.

Winners in four other categories have been revealed today following the virtual judging process, which took place on 16 September.

Caroline Walker picked up the prize for the Coastal views category with her piece titled Heugh Breakwater, which was taken in County Durham, while Katie Vincent won for People and Recreation with her work called Into the Mist – taken in West Sussex.

Elsewhere, Stephen Duncombe’s piece To The Rescue – taken in Norfolk – came out on top for the Industry category, while Ian Butler took home the prize for Ships & Wrecks with his snap of Mylor Harbour in Cornwall.

Every year the society encourages photographers of all abilities to submit pictures that capture the essence of the UK’s connection with the sea. This can be anything to do with merchant ships, fishermen, coast, harbours, ports and more.

This year, the charity encouraged people to look back through their photo albums and submit archive images to avoid unnecessary travel, due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Other notable entries included Liam Holley’s shot of Startpoint Lighthouse, Thomas Salway’s image of a dog running at Findhorn Beach, David Jenner’s work called Under the Stars and George Hodgson’s black and white photo titled Bringing in the Catch.

Chief executive of the Shipwrecked Mariners’ Society, Captain Justin Osmond, said: ‘We were blown away this year by the sheer number of entries for the competition and the outstanding quality of images on show. This year has been a challenging year for many, so it has been fantastic to see everyone come together and celebrate our coastline, our memories of the sea and those working there.

‘Laurence Hartwell’s winning image Beam Trawlers Landing To The Fish Market At Night was almost poetic in the story it told.

‘It symbolised the fishermen, logistics and transport workers who continue to work tirelessly through night and day for our benefit and especially in a year where our reliance on the maritime and fishing industries has been highlighted even further.’

A full list of all the entries can be viewed online and donations to help with the society’s COVID-19 response fund are encouraged.

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