Ilkeston photographer David wins Life Thru The Lens competition

Life Through a Lens finalists and winners pictured with Krishna Parma, centre, the director of Specsavers in Ilkeston and Ashley Booker, fourth right, from the Ilkeston Advertiser, after the presentation of prizes on Monday evening. They are from left, David Cook, Matt Crouch, Helen Bird, Krishna Parma, Ashley Booker, Nigel Downes, David Fairclough and Simon Robinson.
Life Through a Lens finalists and winners pictured with Krishna Parma, centre, the director of Specsavers in Ilkeston and Ashley Booker, fourth right, from the Ilkeston Advertiser, after the presentation of prizes on Monday evening. They are from left, David Cook, Matt Crouch, Helen Bird, Krishna Parma, Ashley Booker, Nigel Downes, David Fairclough and Simon Robinson.

An Ilkeston father-of-two is celebrating after winning the ‘Tiser’s Specsavers Life Thru The Lens photographic competition.

Keen amateur photographer David Fairclough, 36, scooped the top prize with his stunning long exposure night shot of a windmill near Kirk Hallam.

“When I got the email saying I’d been invited, I looked through the Advertiser and saw the selection that was there and the quality of the selection and thought there was no chance I’d win.

“I am absolutely flabbergasted to be honest and well shocked,” he said.

David - who won a £400 cash prize - has enjoyed getting out and about with his camera for around 15 years and specialises in astrophotography.

He often heads up to the hills of the Peak District and across to Attenborough Nature Reserve in Nottinghamshire to capture the perfect shot of the night’s sky.

“The Peak District is fantastic,” he said. “You’re trying to avoid street lights and things like that - although this one is a bit different as I’ve used the street lights to my advantage and it adds a bit more atmosphere to the photo.

“But there are some areas in the Peak District where there’s no light pollution whatsoever and you can get some really good skies.”

It is only the second photography competition David has entered - but he also enjoyed success in his first, being runner-up in a national contest run by the BBC.

Meanwhile, Matthew Crouch, also of Ilkeston, came second for his photograph of Osborne’s Pond at Shipley.

Simon Robinson, from Cossall, was third after impressing judges with his ‘beautifully’ captured view of the iconic Charter Fair in Ilkeston.