Wild Arboretum Photography Competition - The Winners

Shot at Dawn

Visitors are advised that the Shot at Dawn Memorial will close to the public on Monday 6 May. The memorial will undergo restoration and will be closed for approximately six weeks whilst these works take place. Free Shot at Dawn Talks will continue to take place daily at 12.30pm and 1.30pm in the Millennium Chapel, please ask at the Welcome Desk for more information. Visit our Shot at Dawn Restoration Appeal to find out more and donate.

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The National Memorial Arboretum is teeming with wildlife, plant life and fungi.

During February 2022 we asked our visitors and supporters to use the Wild Arboretum exhibition as inspiration, grab a camera and get out into the Arboretum grounds to see what natural elements could be found to inspire their photography. 

Whether a complete beginner, or someone who liked to take photographs for a hobby, we saw many entries featuring fantastic shots of Arboretum flora and fauna. All entries were then shown to renowned artist Gerard Hobson, and a winner from each category was chosen.

The winning entry from each category received a print created by the artist, based on his work in the Wild Arboretum Exhibition that was on display here at the Arboretum until 13 March 2022. 

Winning entry by Oliver Potter featuring purple flowers poking through a bed of brown leaves

Winner - Under 14s Category

Oliver Potter



“It was a carpet of dead fallen leave and bare trees from the winter and this sprig of colour stood out. It made me feel like spring is on the way.” 

- Oliver Potter



"The composition of this photograph is beautiful, with the vibrant crocuses standing out sharply against the crisp brown leaves. The aspect and length of the photograph works really well, adding to the sense of the flowers emerging from the ground up. It really captures the hope of spring. Wonderful."

- Gerard Hobson, Artist and Competition Judge

winning entry by Rob Bendelow featuring birds swooping over the river tame

Winner - Adults Category

Rob Bendelow


“I am a regular visitor to the Arboretum, a great place. Great White Egrets are one of the star birds, often to be found on Junction Pit. They have a love-hate relationship with the local Grey Herons, and on this particular visit treated me to some aerial feistiness!”

- Rob Bendelow

"An excellent photograph of a rare and beautiful sight. The image captures the moment fantastically and has a vivid sense of motion. The crisp, in-focus white of the Egret against the background makes the photo sing, and the composition featuring both river and plant life works very well."
- Gerard Hobson, Artist and Competition Judge