Sixty years ago, almost half of Dorset was officially recognised as OUTSTANDING – an astonishing mix of beautiful landscapes and great views. As part of the 60th anniversary celebrations, we are keen to find out what YOU think is so special about the AONB landscape.

Our Landscapes for Life photo competition has given us an amazing insight into your favourite landscapes, with over 500 images entered – a big THANK YOU to everyone who took part.

The Photo Competition was supported by Dorset Magazine and the National Lottery Heritage Fund and judges were Helen Stiles (Dorset Magazine), Matt Pinner (photographer) and Tom Munro.

Winner of 2020 Photo Competition (c) James LaBouchardiere

In the summer, we were delighted to announce the Winners of the Open Category, a fantastic selection of landscapes throughout the seasons. All 60 of the selected images were displayed in the Landscapes for Life Exhibition at Durlston Castle which ran from August to October 2020 and will reappear at Dorset County Hospital in Dorchester in Spring 2021.

The top 12 entries were included in the Dorset Magazine Coast & Countryside Calendar, with a donation to the Dorset AONB for every calendar sold.

Grange Arch (c) Lulu Fountain

Due to lockdown and access restrictions, we extended the deadline for the Youth Category and were pleased to announce the winners in December 2020. The judges were bowled over by the response from budding young photographers, the quality of photos and love for the landscape really shone through.

Thanks to a generous donation, prizes for the Youth winners were:

  • First prize: Kodak PixPro AZ901 and inclusion of work in the Landscapes for Life Exhibition in Spring 2021.
  • Two Runner-Ups: Two prizes of £75 vouchers for photography equipment

We hope to include many of the Youth photos will be included in the Landscapes for Life Exhibition in Spring 2021.