Hare-raising entry takes first place in South Pennines Park photography competition

The judge’s votes have been cast, and the winners have been chosen. It’s time to introduce the first winner of the South Pennine’s Park photography competition…

Congratulations to Gemma De Cet, who was selected by the judging panel for her stunning picture capturing a mountain hare while out walking in the South Pennines Park.

Her image has now taken pride of place on the header of our social media, and she has been presented with a certificate for her entry.

Gemma, project officer from Middleton, was on one of her usual walks with her camera near the beautiful Dove Stone Reservoir when she spotted the mountain hare emerging from behind a boulder.

She said: “I’m not a professional photographer, but I always have a camera with me. Since lockdown my hobby has just grown and grown.”

“It’s amazing how much wildlife we have on our doorstep. You can’t expect a perfect photo every time because wildlife is unpredictable, but when you do it’s amazing.”

Gemma, who regularly enjoys walks in the South Pennines Park area with her family, said: “It’s good to get out of the house and go for the walk. Some exercise can lift your mood – especially when you see something amazing, like a hare or a lovely view of the hills and reservoir.”

After missing them after a previous visit in 2021, Gemma went looking for the hares again and this time she was successful. “They can often be right in front of your eyes and you can just walk right past them without spotting them.”

Mountain hares are native to Scotland but can be spotted on the moors of the Peak District and South Pennines. They are just some of the wildlife that call the South Pennines home.

Later that day she noticed the competition on Facebook with just two days left to enter and thought she’d go for it.

Gemma, who has won a few competitions with her photography and sold a few prints, said winning this competition has been ‘amazing’.

“It was really nice to be told that over a hundred people entered and I was selected as the winner. I’d recommend that people give it a go and see what they can capture while they’re out and about exploring.”

Gemma has been presented with a certificate and her image will take pride of place on the South Pennines Park Facebook page for the next month.

To enter this month’s photography competition, please visit southpenninespark.org/2022/12/28/launching-our-photography-competition

Photo by Gemma De Cet. Family photo shows Gemma with sons Joseph and Thomas.