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Royal Navy photographers recognised for picture perfect shots

5 July 2017
From emotional homecomings on windswept jetties to the action-packed scenes of operations in the Gulf, the Royal Navy’s photographers see all sides of the Senior Service.

Yesterday the photographers, who deploy with warships and commando units worldwide, have been recognised for their talent, dedication and creativity at the annual Peregrine Trophy awards in London.

Joining up as any other rating into a particular trade such as logistics, engineering or warfare specialists, the sailors work hard to excel at their chosen field before being accepted into the elite photographic branch.

The select few then work with the Royal Navy and Royal Marines on deployments anywhere in the world – from Antarctica to the Arabian Sea, from the UK to the Far East – taking pictures of maritime operations, personnel at work and capturing all aspects of naval life.

Every year the best of these images are showcased at the prestigious Peregrine Trophy awards - this year held at Trinity House in London – with the winners congratulated by the First Sea Lord Admiral Sir Philip Jones.

I’m delighted to have won Royal Navy photographer of the year and over the moon that my video has been recognised, as I’m passionate about video.

Petty Officer Simon Ethell

Captain Ian Stidston, the head of the Royal Navy Photographic Branch, said: “The Royal Navy protects our nation by operating around the world at sea, on land and in the air, and our photographers capture every element of that work.

“I am immensely proud of all they have achieved in the last year, telling the story of the Royal Navy and Royal Marines through their dedication to the art of photography.”

With just 12 professional categories and four amateur classes – the competition is fierce and whittled down by an expert panel of judges. There were more than 400 entries for the awards this year.

The judges were Luke Brighty, picture editor of the Metro, David Botwink, of Maritime Films UK, Jack Ashdown, of digital agency E3, Rob White, of Maritime Films UK, Panay Triantafillides, the Defence Images imagery editor, and Harland Quarrington, the Ministry of Defence head office chief photographer.

Petty Officer Simon Ethell was named this year’s Royal Navy Photographer of the Year with a portfolio of imagery from operations around the world.

He said: “I’m delighted to have won Royal Navy photographer of the year and over the moon that my video has been recognised, as I’m passionate about video.”

The Peregrine Trophy dates back to 1961 and is named after the HMS Peregrine Royal Naval Air Station in Sussex. The award’s primary purpose is to encourage the production of eye-catching, powerful imagery that can be used in the media to demonstrate Royal Navy and Royal Marines operations.

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