Fighting Prostate Cancer is the Aim

Copyright Andy Compton (But I have no issue with the event organisers or Kington Town Football Club using these pictures in anyway they wish).

A fundraising darts competition attracted nearly 60 players from all over the country to Kington this evening. Forty eight men and eight women, including professional darter Andy ‘The Hammer’ Hamilton, took part in the competition hosted by Kington Town Football Club to raise money to fight Prostate Cancer.
The event, which is organised by Phil, Dai and Bob Wozencroft and supported by members of the football club is expected to raise hundreds of pounds for the charity.
The organisers would like to thank everyone who donated raffle prizes and the twelve main sponsors for making the competition a success.

Wonder Woman, Politicians, Wheelbarrows and Beer………

PLEASE NOTE: COPYRIGHT ANDY COMPTON.
These images can be downloaded by members of the public for their own use but anybody wishing to reproduce them either on the web or in printed material must contact me first.

It is not everyday you see Theresa May, Jeremy Corbyn, Wonder Woman, Superman, Sponge Bob Square Pants and many other characters race each while sat in in a wheelbarrow, only stopping to down half a pint of beer in the process.
Step forward Kington Wheelbarrow Race. Over 30 barrows with some competitors in fancy dress, stopped 11 times for a drink as they made their way over a gruelling 1.5 miles.
Hundreds of spectators eagerly lined the streets of the Herefordshire market town to witness the fun and frolics, and it is one of my most favourite events to photograph.
It is also one of the most challenging, tricky light, fast moving subjects and the unpredictability add to the fun for me. And if that wasn’t enough it is also the town where I live, a lot of people know me so I have to do a good job!
I battle between using a wid eangle lens close up and telephoto to capture a good selection of images.
Here are just a small selection of the images from another eventful night, special thanks must go to Kington Festival Committee who make this event possible. Their hard work is most appriciated.

. Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Mens speed winners, Joel Bayliss watches Ed Bullock down his drink.
Mens speed winners, Joel Bayliss pushes Ed Bullock towards the finish line
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy Compton
Copyright Andy compton

Copyright Andy Compton

Kington Walking Festival…..Made it Different By……..

Kington Walking Festival Committee took to a hillside overlooking one of the town’s most well-known landmarks, Hergest Court, to hold their latest meeting.

Eight members, who are preparing for the sixth annual festival in September, took their seats with a view on the top of the Twt, at the edge of the town.

Renowned for showing off highlights of the town and its surroundings in their committee photographs, they have previously held meetings at Hergest Ridge, Bradnor Hill and the Dolyhir Quarry.

Excitement about this year’s festival, which boats several new walks and its first ever cycle event, is mounting, after the festival brochure was published this week.

Kington is one of the great small market towns of Britain. Situated close to the Welsh border it was for centuries a centre for cattle drovers, so a web of footpaths and byways, accessible on foot from the town centre await discovery by present day walkers.

The Offa’s Dyke Path National Trail, the Herefordshire Trail, Mortimer Trail from Ludlow, and the Wyche Way from Broadway all pass through (or start/finish) in the town.

The Kington Walking Festival, which this year takes place from September 21 until 24, is the primary annual event of the Kington Walks charity and this year the programme is bigger and better than ever with over 40 walks covering history, natural history, geology, industry, pubs, landscape and much more of Kington’s hinterland.

New this year is a two day circular walk from Clun with an overnight stay in Bishops Castle and an event for the less able bodied called ‘Don’t Stop Me Now’. In addition to the ever popular Eight Peaks Challenge with the support of Red Kite Fostering, the festival introduces the Three Peaks Challenge.

On September 24 the festival introduces the Walton Wobbler – the first ever cycle event, over about 30 miles, including the high points to the north of Kington with some stiff climbs and descents.

Whether you fancy an amble around the mills and weirs of the town, a ramble to the pub (or two, or even three) or the challenge of the 30 mile Mortimer Trail over two days, there will be something for all walkers.

If all that makes you hungry, sign up for the new foraging event with author Adele Nozedar and learn about the free food hidden in lanes and hedgerows around the town.

And if you have still got energy to burn there will also be lively music and dancing to Little Rumba.

Kington Walks was established by the Kington Chamber of Trade in 2011 to promote sustainable tourism and to help to preserve Kington’s unique atmosphere with support from Herefordshire Council and Kington Town Council. They successfully applied for ‘Walkers Are Welcome’ status for the town in the same year.

Most recently Kington Walks has become a registered charity with the sole purpose of promoting community participation in healthy recreation by encouraging and enabling people to partake in regular walks as a form of exercise in Kington and the surrounding area.

For more information and to book walks, which are already selling quickly visit http://www.kingtonwalks.org.

My Photography Rule Is There Are No Rules

Today I was asked for my opinion on photography and its various ‘rules’.
My golden rule for photography is do what YOU want. Yes take on board advice and criticism but as long as you enjoy taking pictures then that is all that should matter.
In fact I do look to break the rules, it can be a good way of standing out.
As you can see from previous posts my aim is to catch the eye of the reader.
Todays picture has been cropped long and horizontal, simply because I prefer it that way, do not feel the need to stick with the conventional upright or horizontal image.
I often crop square, panoramic and on more than one occasion I have cropped a circular image!

Brexit Experiment Brings Chaos to Kington

Chaos hit the small market town of Kington Herefordshire this morning when government officials tried out an experiment should Brexit discussions break down further.
A new wing of the UK Border Force, renamed UNK the ‘Ununited Kingdom Border Force’ set up a ‘passport and immigration control’ on a small road leading out of the town as a trial test to what may lie ahead.
Kington sits on the English/Welsh border and was the perfect place for a trial claimed an insider.
Local photographer Andy Compton was alerted and was soon on the scene. ‘Officials were confiscating rugby balls from the Welsh as they attempted to cross the border’ claimed Andy.
‘I also noticed many frustrated Kingtonians who cross this part of the border in search of a High Street Bank arguing with officials’.
‘The town has a population of over 2,500 but has no bank, the nearest one being miles away in Presteigne or even Llandrindod Wells both in Wales.
The experiment ended today April 1st at 12 noon.

Chaos at the scene in Kington, Herefordshire this morning.

A Sports Picture Spread covering 20 Minutes of Action at My Local Club

I live in a small community. Occasionally I walk around town looking for stories for the papers. Local papers are always in need of good sports pictures. Here are the results of just 20 minutes covering my home town team Kington Town v Wrens Nest.

Kington Town beat Wrens Nest 4-3 in the West Midlands Regional League Division One match at the Park Road ground.

Kington Town goalkeeper Jason Davis (CORRECT SPELLING) punches under pressure from Wrens Nests Kieron Williams and Christopher Pike.

Kington Town goalkeeper Jason Davis (CORRECT SPELLING) punches under pressure from Wrens Nests Kieron Williams and Christopher Pike.

Stuart Jones and James Edmonds.
Kington Town forward Zak Evans is outnumbered as Wrens Nest’s Kieran Williams head clear alongside teamate Steven Weaver.
Kington Town forward Zak Evans shields the ball from Wrens Nest midfielder Steven Weaver.

Kington Town forward Callum Craddock puts a Wrens Nest player under pressure.
Kington Town forward Callum Craddock puts a Wrens Nest player under pressure.

Kington Town forward Lewis Craddock watches as Wrens Nest defender Jamie Fox heads clear.
What a goal, Callum Craddock’s 35 yard effort beats Wrens Nest goalkeeper Luke Stevens to level for Kington Town as supporters start to celebrate.
Kington Town’s Rory Huntbach just beats a Wrens Nest player to a loose ball.
Kington Town’s Rory Huntbach weaves his way through the Wrens Nest midfield.

Different Lenses Same Scene And a Health Warning!

Unbelievable I know, but these two images feature the same scene.
And they come with a health warning.
First of all and most importantly, if you value your eyesight,……..DO NOT LOOK AT THE SUN……..through a camera!
You can seriously damage your eyes, I will tell you how I took these images while managing to keep my eyesight.

The wide angle view was taken with a sigma 10mm lens on a Nikon D300s. It is a ‘selfie’, I set the timer for ten seconds, rested it on the bank, aimed it in roughly the right direction and pressed the shutter.


The second image is taken with a 200mm lens which on a cropped sensor works out at 300mm. Now I wasn’t stupid enough to look directly through a lens which will magnify the setting sun and burn my eyes out.
I used the monitor on the back of the camera, and hey presto, a nice little silhouette taken of the setting sun on Hergest Ridge.

People Skills are Key……………………..

People Skills are key for successful press photography.
Never underestimate the importance of ‘people skills’ if you want to get your subjects to co-operate. I have found the majority of people are nice and easy going and happy to talk about all aspects of their life.
I am genuinely interested and enjoy asking questions. I find people interesting and I believe you reap what you sow in this world, so I always treat people with respect.
I am comfortable talking to people of all ages and from all walks of life.
Today’s photograph features two people I admire immensely.
As a Hereford football supporter I have had the honour of photographing the managers and players, both Hereford United and the reformed Hereford FC.
When the chance came to picture two of the most influential people in Hereford United’s history with a nice little newsy twist I jumped at it.

On the right is Colin Addison who captained the famous giant-killing team which beat Newcastle United 2-1 in the FA Cup. Colin, who lives in the city, also went on to manage the club on a couple of occasions.
Colin is one of the most approachable people I know, he loves the sport and the club and is happy to talk to anyone.
On the left is former chairman, manager and one of the most important people in the club’s history Graham Turner.
If you ever crossed Graham, and luckily for me I didn’t, you knew about it.
Graham had left Hereford to return to one of our rivals Shrewsbury Town. And, as often, there is a strange twist of fate in football with higher graded ‘Shrews’ drawing Hereford in the FA Cup.
So we saw Graham, who lives near Hereford, return to Edgar Street for this game.
I noticed the men talking in the tunnel so I asked Graham and Colin if they would be happy to pop out to the edge of the pitch and pose for a photograph.
They duly obliged, I suggested they stand by the ‘away’ dugout and took a few photographs. I feel the away dugout and Shrewsbury Town tie play a part in telling the story behind the image.
The photograph was of interest to my paper the Hereford Journal but also the evening newspaper the Shropshire Star.
In situations like this I have found asking people politely helps you get far better results.
The subjects were only guided a little bit, I wasn’t looking for the shaking hands type of picture because I find that to staid and posed.

I Give My Imagination a Buzz With a Personal Project

Using my imagination on mini projects gives me a buzz. My projects vary from on going to ones which I can complete in a short time.
You can shoot what you want when you want, that is the joy of shooting your own personal project.
Today the wife was busy, I had a couple of hours spare. It was either finish the gardening or clean the house.
I managed to get the old grey matter working and instead decided to shoot an hour long personal project.
I will sweet talk her and win over when I return, again another use of the imagination as I pick my words carefully while finishing her project of cleaning or gardening.
I prefer shorts projects, so an hour is all I gave myself, I can then look forward to getting the duster out on my return!
I live in the small market town of Kington and decided to shoot some obscure images of subjects that people pass every day……………………but probably won’t register and recognise in the images.
It was fun and gave me a buzz as I wondered around the streets with a camera, using various angles to challenge the viewer.
None of the pictures have been airbrushed, a few have been posted in black and white as the colour of the buildings may have given the game away!
Here are ten images from the shoot just to give you an idea, the rest I have posted on Facebook for a bit of fun.pic-o

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Have a good Christmas and thanks for following my blog.

Don’t Put the Camera Away….It Is Well Worth a Gamble

Its always worth a gamble while taking pictures. While driving through my home town of Kington last week I noticed how lovely our Christmas lights were. I parked the car up, grabbed my trusty Nikon D300s and looked for a good angle.
There was only one problem, I had no tripod in the boot.
Not put off, I gently lodged the camera against a wall, gently breathed in and squeezed the shutter button. Half a dozen frames fired at 1/6 second aperture F5.6.
Four of these were fairly sharp considering the circumstances.

Kington Town clock lit up at Christmas.
Kington Town clock lit up at Christmas.