Photo of Arctic tern chosen as image for coast’s tourist guide

The front cover of next year's Northumberland Coast Guide.
The front cover of next year's Northumberland Coast Guide.

A photo taken by a visitor to the Farne Islands has been chosen as the front-cover image for next year’s Northumberland Coast Visitor Guide.

Robert Birnie, from Suffolk, snapped a shot of an Arctic tern as it flew in front of the window of St Cuthbert’s Chapel on Inner Farne.

The image was chosen as the winner of the Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Partnership’s photographic competition and will feature on the cover of 40,000 visitor guides next summer.

Chairman of the AONB Partnership, Coun John Woodman, and Andy Craig, a photographer from Christon Bank, were the competition judges.

Explaining why the image caught his eye, Andy said: “The shot is quite unusual; a sharp contrast between the clean, white tern and the reflected blue sky in the chapel window is quite striking.

“I particularly liked this shot because of the setting. Arctic terns can be photographed from the Arctic Circle to the South Atlantic, but this one is definitely on Inner Farne.”

Robert Birnie was delighted to have won the competition. “The image of the tern against the background of the Chapel window reflects how wildlife and history can be experienced together along this wonderful coastline,” he said.

“It’s great to think that 40,000 copies of my shot will be reproduced on the cover of the visitor guide and that it will encourage visitors to explore more of the Northumberland coast. I can’t wait to see it in print.”

The Northumberland Coast Visitor Guide provides information to visitors about the landscape, history, wildlife and villages of the coast as well as lots of things for them to do and see during their stay in the area.

It will be published next March.