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#PictureBlueLondon photo competition – announcing the winners

By cprelucyf
21st January 2022

For London Rivers Week last October, we invited Londoners to snap the capital’s waterscapes. We can now announce the winners of #PictureBlueLondon – held in collaboration with Thames 21, the Environment Agency, ZSL London Zoo and the London Aquarium.

The winning images – which will be on display at the London Aquarium later this year – shed light on the issues facing the capital’s rivers and waterways:

  • Climate change
  • Access to nature, and
  • Health and wellbeing.

Director of CPRE London, Neil Sinden said, “We’re delighted with all the entries to our Picture Blue London photo competition and thank everyone who participated – including our judges. And we congratulate the winners.”

Picture Blue London

London’s many rivers, canals and lakes form a vibrant network of biodiversity, leisure, residency, culture, industry and heritage. As pressure on our water resources and impacts of climate change grow, it’s increasingly important to protect the capital’s blue infrastructure.

The quality of competition entries was very high. Images capture London’s waterways brimming with greenery, wildlife, and community. They include intimate water-level nature shots, vast waterscapes skimming the urban horizon and cultural hotspots where the aquatic environment meets city life.

Our three judges are key figures in London’s photography and environmental community including:

  • Shirley Rodrigues, Deputy Mayor for Environment and Energy, Greater London Authority
  • Dave Webb of the Environment Agency, and
  • Peter Coles, professional photographer and urban ecologist.

Thank you to all who entered. And congratulations to the winners, who’ll each receive £100, free membership to CPRE London, and tickets to the London Aquarium. The overall winner will also receive a family ticket to London Zoo.

We will announce details of our 2022 photography competition later this year.

Overall winner – Health and wellbeing


Adult and child in mist on the shoreline
“Family time exploring the Thames shoreline” Greenwich, by Karin Tearle | Karin Tearle

Karin says, “I’ve lived in Greenwich for over 15 years and love my walks through the park and especially along the Thames Path.

“My camera always comes with me because you never know what you’ll see along the way. Swans in Deptford Creek – you can even do a guided walk on the riverbed with Creekside Discovery Centre – cormorants on Enderby Wharf, herons, and a whole variety of birds in Greenwich Ecology Park, Greenwich Peninsula and much more down towards Crossness Pumping Station in Thamesmead.

“I can’t wait to discover the new 50-mile stretch of coastal path towards the Thames Estuary. These walks are so beneficial for mental and physical health.”

Judge, Peter Coles admired the image’s unique aesthetic draw.

This winning image works for me on several levels. As a photo it has a strong composition, with the fog over the river helping to fire the imagination by hiding the familiar cityscape on the opposite riverbank.

“Despite the strong, silhouetted pier structure on the right, the real focus of the image is the pair of tiny figures at the water’s edge – presumably a parent and child. What a wonderful, shared family moment! Surrounded by natural elements, yet in the heart of London.”

Winner – Access to nature


View of trees and canal through a tunnel
“Light at the end of the tunnel – Regent’s Canal”, by Olivia Jones

Olivia says, “This is a place I visit regularly on my weekly runs along the canal. I was born and bred in the countryside, and this is my way of connecting to nature in our concrete jungle!”

Judge, Dave Webb commended the sensuality of the photograph. “This picture for me beautifully evokes that sense of joy and anticipation when walking into one of London’s wild spaces. Looking at it makes me want to go for a long walk.”

Winner – Climate change


A sign warning of drowning is submerged in river water
“Warning sign, Thames Path, Greenwich Peninsula” by Dela Anderson | Dela Anderson

Dela says, “I love walking along the river, and in London we’re so lucky to have so many miles of it to explore. The tide was particularly high on this day, with waves crashing onto the Thames path in Greenwich.

“I was struck by this sign because it reminded me that rising sea levels are affecting the UK as it becomes increasingly vulnerable to the effects the climate emergency.”

Judge, Shirley Rodrigues noted the pertinence of the image. “‘Warning Sign’ is a timely reminder that the dangers of climate change have moved closer to home.

“This summer’s flash floods were devastating for so many Londoners. Tube stations were flooded. Roads were closed. Hospitals were forced to shut. And people had to leave their homes.

“The photo serves as a wake-up call to all of us that more action is needed to tackle the climate emergency.”

London Rivers Week logo

Find out more about London’s rivers and waterways

You can read more about London Rivers Week, including plans for 2022, on the Thames 21 website