Mencap has announced the winners of its annual Snap! film and photography competition
Among the winners were Aaron Lenzi, Siobhan Hollywood and Caroline Coyle from Northern Ireland.
The judges selected the winners from a total of 433 entries by hopefuls across the UK and internationally, during an intense day of judging.
The winning photographs and their accompanying stories will go on display in Belfast’s City Hall Gardens from 15 October to 23 October, as part of the UK major touring exhibition. The Snap! on tour exhibition is a free, large-scale, outdoor exhibition and open to the public. Last year’s winning images and films were seen by over 9 million people.
In line with this year’s new ‘being active’ theme, entrants were asked to submit images and films showing what makes them happy, sad, angry, proud or excited about being active. The theme was chosen to celebrate the fact that people with a learning disability will now be able to compete in the 2012 Paralympics, following the overturn of a ban that was brought into effect in November 2009. As in other years, all entries were by or of someone with a learning disability, and the activities captured on film include trampolining, boxing, go-karting, gardening and jet-skiing.
Maureen Piggot, Mencap’s director, said: “Each one of this year’s winners is a window onto the world of the photographer and his or her experience of learning disability. What better celebration of the decision to include competitors with a learning disability in the 2012 Paralympics, than these photographs capturing so many people’s passion for sport, leisure and the outdoors?”
Lord Mayor of Belfast, Councillor Pat Convery, congratulated those responsible for the winning photographs. "It has been a real joy to discover these and the stories behind them at the exhibition," he said. "It is wonderful to see such a unique exhibition come to Belfast and I would encourage members of the public to stop by and take a look.”
Each of the six categories had two gold, two silver, two bronze awards as well as runners up. The seven categories are: Active together, Me time, Sporting Hero, Local life, Trips, Sports person and Getting out. In addition, seven FUJIFILM Special Awards were given to entries that were considered outstanding. One gold, one silver and one bronze prize were awarded in the film category. 33 other entries were given commendation as the ‘Best of the rest’.