Eight Oaklands students have achieved countywide recognition for their photography skills as they took to the stage to receive awards at the recent CPRE Hertfordshire Rural Living Awards.
The students, all taking BTEC Photography, Art and Design at the college at St Albans Campus on Hatfield Road entered the Campaign for Rural England (CPRE) Hertfordshire Photographic Competition, which was run in conjunction with the College to capture and celebrate the beauty of the local landscape in Hertfordshire.
Taking the crown in the Photography competition was Hayley Easter, 16 of London Colney with Eleanor Kedge, 16, of Dunstable taking second place. A Highly Commended award also went to17 year-old Emma Ober of Welwyn Garden City.
Further awards were also given to the College’s students in the categories of Urban and Rural Landscape, Community and Youth, Wildlife, Environmental, Historical and Heritage and in the age categories of 16-18 and 21 and over.
The CPRE Hertfordshire Rural Living Awards celebrate the achievements of groups and individuals who strive to improve life and enhance the environment in Hertfordshire’s villages and countryside. 2016 sees the awards in their fourth year, with this year the first students have been invited to take part in this prestigious event.
The competition was open for a three-month period over the summer, with students picking a category and exploring it in photography locally to produce a final submission. After judging this September, awards were presented by the Mayor of St Albans City and District Cllr Frances Leonard, with guests and VIPs treated to an exclusive preview of all the entrants work at Country Hall before the awards began.
Mike La-Traille, Head of Department in Art, Fashion and Design at Oaklands College said: “It is great to be able to harness the passion, enthusiasm and ever-growing skillset of our students and support the CPRE in capturing the tranquillity and beauty of the local landscape.
“This competition provides a great platform to celebrate their creativity and success, made all the better by using inspiration from nature right here in Hertfordshire. We are very proud of their achievements.”
Winner in the Community and Youth category Pedro Fino said: “I feel very honoured to have received this award and it has helped build my confidence in my photography."