National Historic Ships Photo Competition 2013 opens on 1 April

National Historic Ships photo competition

National Historic Ships has fired the starting gun on its fourth photo competition aimed at photographers of all ages and dedicated to encouraging everyone to engage with historic vessels or maritime themes in their local area – but the organisers are particularly keen to interest the young.

There are prizes, including an overall prize of £1,000 to be awarded on a theme or activity involving a vessel from the National Register of Historic Vessels – good themes might include, restoration and repair, sailing, racing, coming into a mooring, or generally working around or enjoying the vessel.

Competition entries will be accepted online from 1 April to 31 August 2013.

For the first time, the competition this year includes a new category, ‘Faces of the sea’ in which the public will vote online.

Entrants also stand to win a small prize if their image is selected as one of a series of favourite images.

The competition’s ‘Young photographer’ category is supported by downloads aimed at younger children, including a whale-based wordsearch and a printable colouring page featuring classic sailing craft, both provided by the well known illustrator Claudia Myatt, who is also a competition sponsor. (See an earlier post about Claudia’s tips for drawing boats here.)

Schools and teachers are invited to get involved with the aim of inspiring children and families to find out more about maritime history. Posters for schools can be obtained from National Historic Ships via email at or by phone 020 8312 8558.

BBA student Jonathan Palmer wins a big photography prize

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Beer Lugger 2010 Winning Photo

Boat builder Jonathan Palmer has won a first prize in the traditional maritime skills in action section of a photographic competition sponsored by National Historic Ships and Classic Boat magazine.

Jon’s winning photograph (above) was taken in May at the Boat Building Academy workshops where he has been a student.

Titled Beer Lugger 2010, the photograph from the building of the new Beer boat Steadfast by students on Jon’s course. He caught the boat on camera as it was awaiting the frenzied process of hot nailing, in which copper nails are quickly hammered into freshly steamed timber ribs and riveted into place.

The prizes were awarded at the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich – after the ceremony Jon apparently enjoyed a game of croquet and a very civilised afternoon tea. He says he will spend the prize money on tools for LP Boatworks, a company that he and fellow Boat Building Academy graduate Ben Larcombe have set up in Colyton, Devon. They plan to offer traditional and modern boat building, restoration and repairs.

Jon’s photo can also be seen in the November issue of Classic Boat or on the National Historic Ships website.

Positioning the copper nails before hot nailing Holding the ribs in postion while the nails are being hammered

Readying the copper nails before hot nailing; the hot nailing process itself