Billingham photographer wins award for Redcar blast furnace image

A North East photographer has won an award for this stunning picture taken of one of the region’s most iconic structures.

Teesside’s blast furnace, on the former Redcar steelworks site, provided the inspiration for photographer John Devlin, from Billingham

The photograph, which he titled The Last of the Dinosaurs, was taken from the narrow road out towards South Gare at the mouth of the River Tees.

The atmospheric black and white image has won a gold medal by the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain (PAGB).

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He said: “I’ve always been drawn to black and white photography. Although I shoot with a digital camera these days, I do have my screen on the camera set to view in black and white. This is a great advantage not only to myself but anyone who is thinking of shooting black and white photography.

“With this in mind and when I saw the scene, I immediately visualised a black and white image. Viewing the image on the back of my camera ‘sealed the deal’ as it were.

“When I was first told of my award I wasn’t fully appreciative of its importance. You don’t get to hear what the judge’s views are but I learned all three chose my image as the Gold Medal entry.

“I’ve been a member of the Gallery Photogroup since its inception 25 years ago so it was also an honour to step on the stage with my Gallery hat on, and receive my medal”.

John, who is part of the Gallery Photogroup in Middlesbrough, submitted the print submitted as one of its entries in the Northern Counties Photographic Federation competition last year.

It was selected from there to represent the NCPF in the national Inter Federation Competition and has now been awarded a gold medal in the mono print category.

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Gallery Photogroup chair Francis Annett said: “John Devlin has shown over many years what a talented and skilful photographer he is.

“The Gold Medal awarded by a national organisation (the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain) recognises the best of images submitted from over the whole country. Gallery Photogroup is very happy for John and we are all so proud of his outstanding achievement.”

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