The Landscape Institute has announced the results of the photographic competition launched in August as part of its AshWatch campaign.
The winning shot, by Jacky Frampton, shows an ash tree in Salisbury Cathedral Close.
It is one of only a small number of ash trees within the historic close, says Frampton. ‘The tree is on one of the main thoroughfares, which is used by numerous locals and tourists all year round. It is also in an area used by several of the schools within The Close on a regular basis for sports etc. If this tree were lost it would leave a significant hole, both physically and in the enjoyment of the area by everyone that uses it.’
The three highly commended entries are: Clive Wilton’s image of an ash tree at Malham Cove; Carolin Gohler’s image of a declining ash tree in rare hoar frost at Coton Countryside Reserve just west of Cambridge; and Paul Redshaw’s image taken at Rassal Ashwood National Nature Reserve in Wester Ross, Scotland.
‘The winning photograph seems to best capture the extraordinary cultural and aesthetic contribution which the ash tree makes to the British landscape and the essence of what we stand to lose as chalara takes hold across the UK,’ commented judges Jo Watkins PPLI, past president of the LI, and landscaper photographer Julian Jones.
The winning photograph demonstrates a good level of technical competence, particularly in terms of composition, they added. ‘The image of Salisbury Cathedral offers a careful study of a wholly man-made composition of the mature ash tree acting as counterbalance to an iconic British building.’
The relationship of church to the ash tree has an ancient cultural resonance in both Saxon and Celtic mythology, the judges noted, and the photo reflects this. ‘The tree and cathedral form part of a wider group which demonstrates the value of considered relationships between natural and built form.’
Click here to learn more about the AshWatch campaign.