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Selsdon Wood Photo Competition

It was last year when walking in Selsdon Wood I saw on the notices board there was a Photographic Competition, and you were asked to submit six photographs made in the wood in the past year.

I had been walking the dog and shooting regularly in Selsdon Wood for over a year so I had a large selection to chose from. The wood is over 200 acres of woodland and meadow, and there are lots of nature and wildlife subjects to shoot if you know where to look. I primarily shot macro, insects being the favourite and this was the majority of the shots that I could submit.

The Cover Shot "Nowhere to go"

The comp is run by the Friends of Selsdon Wood, a group of volunteers that look after the wood doing lots of maintenance and conservation work in the wood all year round. The photographs that are entered in the comp may be used to make a calendar that is printed and sold to raise funds for the friends of Selsdon Wood.

Every September they hold an open day where there are a lot of displays of all descriptions. Local craft makers offering their wares for sale and giving demos of how it's done. Also, you can see some of the local wildlife conservation organisations offering help and advice on how you can help preserve the wildlife in the area.  

Heather collecting the votes at the open day 

One of the stands run by Heather Glover is the Photo contest. Heather had collected all the entries in and had them printed. There were 50 final entries that were displayed on large boards and each shot has an ID number.


There is a secret ballot where members of the public visiting the event can vote for their favourite pictures. There were over a 100 votes cast and counted and the winners are notified by email after the event.

A few days later I was amazed to receive an email from Heather to give the good news, I had won second place in the comp. Heather told me that I had missed out on first place by one vote.

The winner was a really great shot of a Tawny Owl by David Malins. Just spotting an Owl up in a tree is hard, let alone making a good photograph of one.

My second place shot that I had called "Nowhere to go" was of a Soldier Beetle. This had been one of the first shots I had made with my new Tamron 90mm macro lens and was really pleased with. This was one of the shots I entered and as it turned out I was very glad I did.

But it didn't end there. I was walking the dog and looking for the next competition winning photograph when I met Heather who told me that my "no where to go" shot had been chosen to be the cover shot for next years calendar. 

So if you see a local photography competition, enter one of your photographs - you never known what can happen.  

If you would like a calendar you can order a copy from the Friends of Selsdon Wood web site. Just contact Heather and she will organise it.

The cost is £5. All the profit goes into the friends funds, and will help them out immensely. 

Thank you



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Mark Shoesmith