Tradition has it that Scotland’s national flag – the St Andrew’s Cross or Saltire – was adopted following a battle fought in 832AD near Athelstaneford in which a white cross appeared against a blue sky above the fighting and inspired the Scots to victory.
The Competition challenged photographer to bring the 9th century origins of Scotland’s flag into a 21st century context by capturing a dramatic modern-day image of a Saltire appearing in our skies. The Trust was thrilled that photographers responded so enthusiastically, and a total of 231 entries were submitted from all parts of Scotland by the closing date of St Andrew’s Day.
The panel of judges, comprising East Lothian Provost Sheena Richardson, Athelstaneford Minister Joanne Evans-Boiten and distinguished Scottish Press Photographer Ian Torrance MBE, met just before Christmas to consider the entries. It proved a difficult task, such was the quality of the images, but eventually winners were selected and these will share the prize money of £500.
The overall winner, who will receive £250, was James Gordon of Galashiels for his atmospheric photograph of a Saltire over Loch Moidart in Ardnamurchan.
The winner of the East Lothian Section was Victor Beaumont of Monk’s Muir for his image of a Saltire looking west towards Athelstaneford.
The winner of the Rest of Scotland Section was Bill McKenzie of Sauchie for his image of a Saltire over Crail Harbour.
The winner of the Under 16 Section was Anna Devine (15) of Longniddry for her photograph of a Saltire over Prestonpans.
Trust Chairman, David Williamson, expressed his thanks to everyone who had participated, and confirmed that an Exhibition of around 50 of the best entries, including the winners, will tour the main Libraries in the county for 8 weeks from late February until April. He explained “This will be an extremely colourful display of photographs, showing Saltires in the sky which are of different shapes and sizes and cloud conditions, many of them taken in spectacular landscape settings across Scotland”.
The Exhibition dates are as follows:-
- Friday 25 February – Wednesday 9 March: PRESTONPANS LIBRARY
- Friday 11 March – Wednesday 23 March: HADDINGTON LIBRARY
- Friday 25 March – Wednesday 6 April: MUSSELBURGH LIBRARY
- Friday 8 April – Thursday 22 April: DUNBAR LIBRARY