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Compo winners heading for Heathrow - Three amateur photographers will have their work seen by millions at Heathrow Airport after they scooped the top prizes in a landmark competition run by Emirates Airline.
Around 900 entries were received online at Emirates' dedicated microsite www.keepdiscovering.com/uk. Of these, 48 finalists were chosen, and in a surprising twist the three overall winners as selected by Emirates executives and professional photographer Max Forsythe, all turned out to be amateurs.
Vic Sheppard, Emirates Vice President UK, said: "With more than 25 million travellers passing by the roundabout each year, this kind of exposure would be a great achievement for any professional photographer. We were extremely impressed by the huge amount of interest the competition generated and the quality of the work submitted - so you can imagine our surprise to learn that our winners were all your average holiday snappers."
The three prize winners are being awarded return flights to anywhere on the Emirates network.
Overall winner, Michael Evans, wins return First Class flights for his surreal photo of the quaint canal town of Xitang in China taken in March this year. Mr Evans, who is a first-time photography competition entrant, said: "I am completely humbled by this win. Over the past 35 years I have travelled widely and taken hundreds of photographs of the places and people I have visited. It is a great feeling to know that one of these will now be in prime-position on the Emirates Roundabout for everyone visiting Heathrow to see."
Eleanor Scriven, who was second place, receives return Business Class flights for her picture of a New Zealand fur seal on Wharaiki Beach in New Zealand. The other prize winner was Frank Cunnane, who received return Economy Class flights for his stunning image of paradise taken in the Maldives.
Vic Sheppard, Emirates Vice President UK, said: "Our congratulations go out to all of the finalists and competition winners, and we hope that those who won complimentary flights will enjoy broadening their travel experiences with our services."
Emirates acquired the rights to the roundabout at the gateway to Heathrow Airport in April 1st this year - ending British Airway's 16 year hold over the site.