OWPG president Roly Smith presents outdoor feature award to Jon Sparks. Photo: Rudolf Abraham

OWPG president Roly Smith, left, presents outdoor feature award to Jon Sparks. Photo: Rudolf Abraham

More than a dozen outdoor writers and photographers gained awards for their work at a recent gathering in Snowdonia.

Members of the Outdoor Writers’ and Photographers’ Guild held their annual awards at the National Mountain Centre at Plas y Brenin, during which top practitioners received recognition for their work.

The winner in the guidebook category was Kev Reynolds, contributing editor of Trekking in The Alps: 20 Classic Routes, published by Cicerone Press. Judge Christina Hardyman said: “This is a book that will make you plan the next 20 years of Alpine holidays straight away.”

The outdoor book award went to Adrian Hendroff for From High Places – A Journey through Ireland’s Great Mountains, published by the History Press, which the judges described as ‘an eye-opener of a book’.

Photographer and writer Jon Sparks won the feature prize for his article On the Beaten Track, which appeared in Cycle magazine. The travel feature award went to Judy Armstrong for Rivers Deep, Mountain High, which appeared in France magazine.

Ian Battersby’s Winter Comes to Yorkshire in TGO magazine won in the words and pictures category, and the Photography Award was won by David Taylor for Northumberland in Mono.

Anglophile American writer and Campaign to Protect Rural England president Bill Bryson was unable to attend the meeting to pick up the top Golden Eagle award for outstanding service to the outdoors. He will be presented with his award, which takes the form of an original watercolour painting by David Bellamy, in the New Year.

The 2011 Derryck Draper Award for innovation in the outdoor trade went to American fabric manufacturer Polartec for its revolutionary NeoShell breathable fabric, described by judge Chris Townsend as ‘the most breathable membrane I’ve ever tried.’

The Outdoor Writers’ and Photographers’ Guild was founded in 1980, as the UK’s only association of media professionals working largely or entirely in the outdoors.

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