With almost 3,500 entries to sift through, our readers didn’t make the job of picking a “winner of winners” in Farmers Weekly’s annual photo competition remotely easy.
The winner, runner-up and highly commended entries of all eight competition categories were revealed in the Christmas double issue of Farmers Weekly and online on 22 December.
Each of the category winners were then carefully considered for the top prize by guest judge and former winner of our Harvest Highlights photo competition Heather Ross and the Farmers Weekly team.
Bagging the cash prize of £250 as “winner of winners” in the 2017 photography competition is Vicky Drysdale with her striking photo of sheep being brought down to the pens to remove the tups from the flock.
Vicky lives and works just outside the Lake District National Park with her partner Kieren. They both have full-time day jobs, but also look after their own flock of 170 commercial breeding ewes on the family farm.
“I was very surprised to hear that I had won overall in the photo competition, especially knowing how many other fantastic entries there have been,” said Vicky.
“I entered the photo because I thought it was a really cheerful picture, taken on one of those days that makes you feel grateful to be out and about with the sheep. A bit of colour to brighten up a long, dark winter.
“My partner Kieren would like to point out that the tups have worked, it’s just we had marked them all up differently so we could see who had been the busiest.”
The tups had to be removed a little earlier this year as Vicky and Kieren are expecting their first baby in March, so it looks like it will be a busy lambing season for the couple.
Guest judge Heather said: “This picture was very deserving of being the overall winner because it’s very striking and colourful with great composition. The line of sheep and the fence really draw your eye into the scene.
“It’s a stunning farming photograph, and the tups look like they had enjoyed themselves, too. Many congratulations to the photographer – a very worthy winner.”