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PA photographer crowned Scotland's finest

Press Association photographer David Cheskin took home a brace of trophies at last night’s First ScotRail Press Photography Awards 2008.

David, from Peeblesshire, was crowned Scotland’s top press photographer and also the proud of owner of celebrity picture of the year for his shot of Sir Sean Connery at the Edinburgh International Book Festival.

His prize-winning portfolio included photos of Charles and Camilla sharing a joke at the Mey Highland Games, First Minister Alex Salmond, a ship ablaze at Port of Leith, in Edinburgh, and a seagull attacking a gannet in the Firth of Forth.

Ken Lennox, former picture editor of The Sun and chair of the judging panel, described David’s submission as “evidence of a professional who shows great versatility in his approach and style”.

He added: “Some of his shots really make you think. This is a worthy winner in a very strong category.”

Gordon Fraser from the East Lothian News was named local photographer of the year. A record number of almost 3,200 images were received for this year’s awards with 42 photographers and nine magazines/newspapers shortlisted.

The awards were presented by transport minister Stewart Stevenson MSP in Glasgow.

The minister presented Ian Torrance, former chief photographer at the Daily Record, with a lifetime achievement award in recognition of his outstanding contribution to press photography.

The full list of winners is:

Photographer of the Year
David Cheskin, Press Association

Local Photographer of the Year
Gordon Fraser, East Lothian News

Young Photographer of the Year
James Glossop, The Times

Features Photographer of the Year
Winner: Phil Wilkinson, Scotland on Sunday
Highly Commended: Jane Barlow, The Scotsman

Student Photographer of the Year
Winner: Jim Carroll, Stevenson College, Edinburgh
Highly Commended: Artur Drazkowski, Clydebank College

Sports Photographer of the Year
Winner: Ian MacNicol, freelance

Sports Picture of the Year
Winner: Ian MacNicol, freelance
Highly Commended: Tom Main, freelance

Picture Essay of the Year
Winner: Ian Rutherford, The Scotsman

News Picture of the Year
Phil Wilkinson, Scotland on Sunday

Celebrity Picture of the Year
Winner: David Cheskin, Press Association
Highly Commended: Lesley Martin, Daily Record

Open Category
Ian MacNicol, freelance

Judges’ Choice
Ben Begley, Digger Newspaper

Lifetime Achievement Award
Ian Torrance

Newspaper of the Year
Sunday Herald

Magazine/Supplement of the Year
The Herald Magazine

First ScotRail Employee Photographer of the year
Winner: Mark Graham, Johnstone
Highly Commended: William Kingsbury, Lossiemouth
Highly Commended: Sian Broderick, Cornhill, Banffshire

Some of the award-winning images:

  • News Picture of the Year
    Phil Wilkinson – Scotland on Sunday

  • Sports Picture of the Year
    Ian MacNicol – freelance

  • Celebrity Picture of the Year
    David Cheskin – Press Association

  • Seagull attacking a gannet, Firth of Forth
    David Cheskin – Press Association

  • Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond
    David Cheskin – Press Association