Wiston man wins CLA photo competition with image of tractor mechanic

Winning picture 'John the Tractor Mechanic' taken by Matthew Thomas from Wiston SUS-190602-103746001
Winning picture 'John the Tractor Mechanic' taken by Matthew Thomas from Wiston SUS-190602-103746001

A man from Wiston has been announced as one of the winners in a regional photo competition for his striking image of a tractor mechanic.

Matthew Thomas won an overnight stay at Combermere Abbey’s luxurious award-winning North Wing in Cheshire for his entry in the CLA competition.

Matthew’s image ‘John the Tractor Mechanic’ scooped best photo in the ‘people working in the countryside’ category.

CLA director general and competition judge, Sarah Hendry, said: “I love the real connection this photo achieves between John and the viewer – capturing that humorous, self-deprecating glint in his eye.

“The ancient clutter is wonderful and you can explore it for ages, there’s always something new to spot – it appeals to the ‘shed’ instinct in all of us.

“And last but most important, it celebrates the essential but largely hidden army of modest individuals who really make the countryside work.”

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Fellow judge and professional photographer Matthew Seed said it contains ‘so much old school British story and heritage in one image’.

Over the last 12 months, the CLA - a membership organisation for owners of land, property and businesses - received hundreds of photos from members and the public, showcasing the iconic landscapes and creatures of England and Wales and telling the stories of the people who live and work in the countryside.

After a difficult judging process, the CLA’s panel chose a series of champions from regions across England and Wales, as well as an under 18s winner.

Sarah Hendry added: “Judging the entries was like opening a vast sack of sweets. Each one was a pleasure to discover.

“The range and diversity of the photos submitted celebrates the endless variety, beauty and interest that we find in our countryside and rural communities.”

The judges also paid tribute the high standard of entries and the number of ‘real gems’ that have come to light.

CLA President and competition judge Tim Breitmeyer said: “The entries we received have shown the most wonderful display of rural life and the countryside.

“There is an immense wealth of talent here, and in particular some of our younger entrants are just as accomplished as their elder counterparts.”

For more information about the CLA, visit www.cla.org.uk/your-area/south-east/regional-news and follow @CLASouthEast on Twitter.

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