Photos wanted for new charity calendar

People with time on their hands are being urged to look through their photos of the Scottish Borders and enter a competition.

The Macmillan Cancer Support Coldstream committee, helping people in the Borders, is looking to create its first calendar for the whole area.

Last autumn, the committee launched a digital photographic competition to create a picture calendar for 2021. The closing date is 15 May, so there’s still time to enter.

A spokesman said: ‘In the last few weeks Coronavirus has changed the lives of all of us in ways we could never have imagined. Work, school and community life have all been turned upside down.

‘For many healthy people self-isolation and social distancing will be stressful and boring. The initial novelty of having time to watch daytime TV or catch-up on your reading wears off and then what do you do? Financial stress will also be a new and unwelcome addition to some households.

‘For local charities and volunteer groups who normally provide a social events calendar in our communities throughout the year, the impact will be financially devastating.

‘From coffee mornings to raffles, sport and fitness classes to fetes – all cancelled for the foreseeable future to keep people safe. The desperately-needed income from these events will be lost until the pandemic is over and we can re-organise. The social aspect of arranging and supporting these community gatherings has been wiped out.’

The committee say that entrants don’t need to be David Bailey or Patrick Lichfield – if you have a phone that takes photos or a camera, you’ve got all you need.

The spokesman continued: ‘Tou can take photos during your daily exercise whilst still observing the social distancing regulations. You can take photos while self-isolatingin your garden or from your window.

‘You can go through your old digital photo libraries to select pictures to enter.

‘Taking photos can occupy you mentally and physically and give you a break from thinking about coronavirus. Make it a family activity involving the children or grandchildren who form part of your household, a cheap way to fill the day.

‘We’ve broadened the scope of the competition to enable as many people in the area as possible to participate – the theme, formerly Coldstream through the Seasons, is now Borders through the Seasons.

To request an entry form and terms & conditions, email Entry costs £2 per photo, up to a maximum of five per person. Photos must be digital and submitted by email.

The judging panel comprises (if healthy at the time) photographers Guy Gumm and Barbara Berkowitz, MP John Lamont and MSP Rachael Hamilton.

Calendars will be on sale from July 2020, pandemic lockdown permitting.