Royal UK Navy photographers that 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 Afghanistan, from the UK to the Far East – taking pictures of maritime operations, personnel at work and demonstrating all aspects of Service life.
Each year the best of these images are showcased at the prestigious annual Peregrine Trophy awards – which this year has been held on board HMS Bulwark in London. The Royal Navy’s Fleet Flagship is currently in London as part of the celebrations for the Royal Marines’ 350th anniversary.
With 15 professional categories and three amateur classes – the competition is fierce and is whittled down by an expert panel of judges. This year they were Matthew Fearn, Picture Editor at the Daily Telegraph, Roger Payne of Bright Publishing, Bette Lynch of Getty Images, Anthony Massey of BBC World Service, Eleanor Montague BBC’s Foreign Deputy Editor, Tristan Pride of digital agency e3 and Ali Kefford, a freelance national journalist.
Head of the Royal Navy Photographic Branch Captain Ian Stidston said: “It has been a fantastic evening in a fitting setting onboard HMS Bulwark and one that confirms how much exceptional talent and professionalism we have in the Navy’s photographic branch – and also the amateur photographers who have taken some brilliant photographs.
“The very high standard of the images displayed onboard HMS Bulwark today are testament to the flexibility and can-do approach of our people and highlight the dedication to both their art and their Service.
“I could not be more proud of the Navy’s photographers who have managed to capture compelling still and moving images that vividly tell the story of the Royal Navy and Royal Marines on operations.”
Open to the 42 photographers in the branch, there were 350 professional entries and 65 amateur images from 11 hopefuls presented this year.
The judges spoke highly of the entries received and of the Royal Navy’s enthusiasm and professionalism in providing high-level imagery from across the world.
Commenting on the Royal Navy’s disaster relief operation in the Philippines at the end of 2013, one of the judges, Matthew Fearne, Picture Editor at the Daily Telegraph said the navy photographers had filled a much-needed imagery gap.
“It should not be underestimated how relieved and thankful the world’s media was when they started receiving imagery of the disaster relief effort in the Philippines,” he said. “The Royal Navy photographers were initially the only resource for quality images from the area and provided global headline stories with much needed pictures and 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 the Royal Navy and Royal Marine’s operations.
Press Release, May 30, 2014