Amateur Photographers Sought By Battersea Society & Royal College of Art

Competition finalists will win cash and get exhibited at the RCA

The 2021 winning photo ‘Fire’ was taken by 11-year-old Louise Benne
The 2021 winning photo ‘Fire’ was taken by 11-year-old Louise Benne. Picture: the Battersea Society

July 18, 2023

The Royal College of Art, which is headquartered on Howie Street, is supporting this year’s Battersea Society Photographic Award.  

Battersea Past, Present and Future is the theme for this year’s award and the competition is open to everyone, with the aim of exploring images of Battersea’s rich heritage, vibrant present or possible future.

This is the Battersea Society’s second photo competition and there’s a top prize of £400, the chance for all the finalists to be exhibited at the Royal College of Art’s Dyson Gallery this autumn as well as the opportunity to feature in a Battersea Past, Present and Future Calendar. The winner within each category will receive a cash prize of £200.

Pavarotti’s Puddle by Barbara Callway was a 2021 category winner. Picture: the Battersea Society

“You’ll need to think up a title for your photo before you submit it on our entry page, where there’s also space for you to say a little more about it if you like,” says the Battersea Society.

“It can be of anything that inspires you, provided it fits into one of our three categories—Battersea Past, Battersea Present or Battersea Future.”

Photos need to have been taken within the boundaries of Battersea – please see the map below – and the Society suggests anyone struggling for ideas takes time out “to explore Battersea’s unique heritage, its more modern architecture, and its many open spaces. Or are you more interested in people? Diverse communities and varied cultural opportunities surround you”.

Entries can be submitted here and any queries about the competition can be emailed to:

Competitors can also access a video here put together by the RCA with some top tips on taking good photographs.

Competition boundary map. Picture: the Battersea Society 

Entries must be in by 31 August to be in with a chance of winning the top prize of £400 and the competition is open to all amateur photographers. You can enter up to three photos within the whole competition—that’s one in each category, three in one category, or however else you please. You can also submit photos you’ve specifically taken for the competition and ones you’ve shot previously.

The Battersea Society says it’s “keen to understand what Battersea means to you, and well aware too that not everything you see will necessarily feel positive… Filters and enhancements are allowed, but we reserve the right to exclude any image where we feel editing has changed the photo’s authenticity”.  

The competition is open to everybody, except professional photographers, and full terms and conditions can be found here.

Under 18s will need the permission of a parent or guardian to enter.

The Battersea Society said: “We are grateful to the Royal College of Art who have kindly agreed to support the Award. The RCA is the world’s leading art and design university and has had its roots in Battersea for over 25 years. 

“The RCA’s Battersea campus near Battersea Bridge houses a range of courses including its Photography and Print Programmes.”

The Battersea Society is the long-established civic group covering the whole of Battersea, from Nine Elms in the east to St John’s Hill in the west.

The Society originated in 1965 when the London Borough of Battersea was submerged into neighbouring Wandsworth. With the encouragement of councillors and former borough mayors, the Society was established to preserve the borough’s rich history and character. “Three much-loved Battersea landmarks were once under threat - Albert Bridge, Battersea Town Hall (now Battersea Arts Centre), and Battersea Square - the Society explains. “In each case, the Battersea Society was instrumental in saving them from the wrecker’s ball. In our dynamic, expanding, living community, we work hard in support of changes that are for Battersea’s benefit.”

“We’re part of numerous local support networks, working hard to keep members informed and connected. We issue a regular email newsletter and make extensive use of social media to keep our members updated on all things Battersea, whilst our very popular quarterly Battersea Matters magazine explores our past, present and future in more depth.” 

Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony in October during the Battersea Past, Present & Future Exhibition at the Royal College of Art.

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