Adventures on the National Cycle Network Photography Competition

Send us your photos of the National Cycle Network in Scotland to be in the running to win some fantastic prizes. The winners will be announced in early August, with all shortlisted entries exhibited at the 2019 Glasgow Canal Festival, and displayed to thousands of visitors throughout August at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

scenic view of National Cycle Network in Scotland

From 29th April to 22nd June, we're inviting people of all ages, backgrounds and photography skills to submit their best images of the parts of the National Cycle Network in Scotland that they love. We’re looking for photos that reflect the National Cycle Network as a varied and beautiful route to spot wildlife and experience the best of rural and urban Scotland when travelling by foot or bike.

We’ll be offering some fantastic prizes for winning entries. Additionally, shortlisted entries will be featured at the Glasgow Canal Festival and on display along the Union Canal for visitors to see during the month of August, as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

There are four categories for participants to enter, with a prize awarded to the winner of each category.

Is there a leafy urban towpath, charming laneway, imposing Victorian factory or something more modern that catches your eye while out and about on the National Cycle Network?

This category invites you to share your perspective on aspects of urban life along the National Cycle Network. Whether it's bustling streets, intricate canals, abandoned buildings or your favourite stop-off point when walking or cycling, we want to see what inspires you.

The Urban category is sponsored by Scottish Canals.

Prize: A family boat trip at the Falkirk Wheel.

Jubilee Bridge View

Have you got a great photo of Scottish rural life along the National Cycle Network?

This category recognises the Network as a place to see stunning scenery. We’d love to see any shots of mountains, forest, bodies of water, village life, farms or hills on your National Cycle Network route.

The Rural Routes category is sponsored by Sustrans Scotland.

Prize: £50 retail voucher for Cotswold Outdoors

Playful Stoat - 2018 finalist

What wildlife have you spotted when walking or cycling on the National Cycle Network? 

This could be a bumblebee buzzing around some flowers, a robin enjoying the morning dew, a fox crossing your path or any other wildlife you encounter.  

The Wildlife on the Network category is sponsored by the Scottish Wildlife Trust.

Prize: An animal adoption pack of the winners’ choice. Adoptions cover a range of iconic Scottish wildlife including beaver, puffin and red squirrel.

New for 2019, the Young Scot category invites those aged 11-26 to submit your favourite urban, rural or wildlife photo aloing the National Cycle Network.

Those wishing to submit photos for separate categories are advised to do so under the respective categories as entries cannot be considered for both.

The Young Scot category is sponsored by Young Scot

Prize: Entrants and winners can collect 100 Young Scot Rewards points for taking part, with the category winner receiving an additional 500!

Oban to Inverness, along National Cycle Route 78

We’ve teamed up with Scottish Canals, Scottish Wildlife Trust and Young Scot to offer some amazing prizes for the winners, including a family trip to the Falkirk Wheel, the opportunity to adopt an animal (including puffins, ospreys or otters) and reward points for holders of Young Scot cards.

If that’s not exciting enough, the twelve shortlisted entries will also be featured at the Glasgow Canal Festival at the end of July and along the Union Canal in Edinburgh, as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Make sure to visit the canal during August to see the stunning display.

We’ll be promoting your work in the Edinburgh Fringe programmes (printed and online) and through social media. An unmissable opportunity to showcase your work to a wide audience during the busiest month in Edinburgh!

Photos should be in submitted in .jpeg format and no more than 10MB in size. Please ensure images are 300dpi. If you are unsure what this means, please email [email protected].

Send your submission by email to [email protected] with the following information to allow us to administer the competition:

1) Your name

2) Your contact telephone number and email address

3) Category you are entering (age required for the Young Scot category)

4) Location where the photo was taken, including National Cycle Network Route number 

5) Background to your photo - where you were travelling to, what inspired you to take the photo etc.  

6) Name you are happy to be made public if your photo is shortlisted or if you win (e.g you may want us to use your first name and second name, first initial and surname only, initials only, or “Anonymous”)

We are committed to protecting your personal data. For information on how we do this, see our privacy notice.

Entries will be shortlisted and the twelve chosen entries will be uploaded to our Facebook Gallery on 1 July. The photos that receive the most votes and likes will win in their category.

All of the shortlisted entries will be displayed during the respective festivals in July and August, with the winner of each category having been chosen by the public vote.

During summer 2019 there will be three separate Sustrans photo competitions themed around the National Cycle Network: one covering the Bristol and Bath Path, one covering Scotland, and one covering the whole of the UK (to be announced). A single person may enter one, two, or all three competitions, provided they are entering a significantly different photograph in each competition.

If you would like to enter more than one Sustrans photography competition but are unsure whether the images you’d like to enter are sufficiently different, please contact us at [email protected] and we can advise you.

If you would like to find out more about the competition please email [email protected].

You can also join the discussion about the photo competition on Twitter by using the hashtag #ScotPhotoComp19.

If you would like to help us record wildlife in your local area or help look after the National Cycle Network, get in touch


Closing date for entries is Monday 22 June 2018.

Shortlisted photos will be uploaded to our Facebook Gallery. The winning photos are the ones which receive the most ‘likes’ on our Facebook Gallery by Wednesday 17 July 2018.

Unless we are asked by the photographer to withhold their information we will always credit the photographer.

By entering the competition, you agree that Sustrans, and its sponsors, may exhibit and display the submitted photographs online on the Sustrans website and social media channels so that they can be seen by the public in association with this competition.


  1. The competition is open to anyone except those directly involved in the organisation and judging
  2. Employees of sponsors who have not been directly involved in the organisation of this competition are eligible to enter.
  3. It is open to all professional and amateur photographers of any nationality.
  4. Entrants to those outside of the “Young Scot” category must be aged 18 or over on the day the competition closes.
  5. Entrants for “Young Scot” must be between 11 and 26 years old on the day the competition closes.
  6. Entrants 18 or younger must have their parent or legal guardian’s permission to enter the competition. Entrants must supply a valid email address for their parent or legal guardian, who can respond with ““I am happy for my child to take part in this competition, under the competition’s terms and conditions”
  7. Entries must have been taken along the National Cycle Network in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Coast of Ireland, the Isle of Man or the Channel Islands.
  8. An image will be rejected if in the opinion of the judges it appears that the image has been taken in such a way that wildlife law or animal welfare requirements may have been breached; protected species or habitats have been compromised; or the image has been otherwise taken in an irresponsible way. If you are licensed to take pictures or visit areas which might otherwise be unlawful you should say so, and we may ask to see the licence if your picture is shortlisted.
  9. Photographs using model animals or live bait are not permitted.
  10. Double exposures and other images that have been manipulated outside of the rules are not eligible.
  11. Images that have been entered into a major competition where the results are still pending are not eligible for entry.
  12. A picture that has already won a prize (winner, runner-up or commended) in a major competition (ie one receiving more than 500 images) national or international, cannot be entered.


  1. There is a limit of two entries per category per person.
  2. All entries must be submitted digitally.
  3. No digital files will be returned, but all low-resolution images, apart from those short-listed, will be destroyed after the close of the competition.
  4. There is no limit to the number of categories an individual entrant can enter.
  5. No single image may be entered into more than one category
  6. Entries will not be returned but will be destroyed after a suitable time, after the results are announced.
  7. Shortlisted entries will be used in Sustrans promotional materials and digital channels.


A panel of elected members from Sustrans Scotland and sponsorship organisations will select images based upon technical skill, diversity, originality and creativity of composition. Judging will be anonymous. They will assess entries and a shortlist will be announced following the closing date.

All those on the shortlist will be contacted and will then have approximately 12 days to supply a high-resolution file. Failure to produce a high-resolution file within the designated time period could eliminate an entrant from the shortlist. The organisers cannot be held responsible for emails that do not arrive due to the entrant’s email security settings or restrictions placed by their Internet service provider.

Entrants whose images are shortlisted, will sometimes be asked to supply an extended caption and in some cases other information. All winners will be notified by phone or email. Shortlisted photos will be published on the Sustrans Facebook page for a public vote.


The prizes are as stated. The prizes are not transferable. Prizes are subject to availability and we reserve the right to substitute any prize with another of equivalent value without giving notice.

Copyright and permissions

By submitting images to Sustrans, each entrant confirms and warrants that:

  1. they are the sole author of each entry and that it is their original work;
  2. they own the copyright and any other intellectual property rights of each image;
  3. they have the permission of anyone pictured in the image (or, where the image shows any persons under 18, the consent of their parent/guardian) for the usage rights required by Sustrans and will indemnify Sustrans against any claims made by any third parties in respect of such infringement;
  4. they have not licensed or disposed of any rights in the image that would conflict with uses to be made by Sustrans; and
  5. they have received any necessary permissions from the owner(s) of objects including buildings included in submitted images for the usage rights required by Sustrans and will indemnify Sustrans against any claims made by any third parties in respect of such infringement.
  6. Entrants agree that the organisers can sub-license images to the media for reproduction in connection with the competition and exhibition only.
  7. Sustrans will make every reasonable effort to ensure that name credits are given to any photograph published in any medium.
  8. Free usage of any photograph will not be permitted by Sustrans, or any of its partners or sponsors outside of the scope of the competition and exhibition.
  9. There is no plan envisaged by Sustrans, or any of its partners or sponsors, to create a general commercial library of the images entered into this competition.
  10. Entrants retain the copyright to images submitted.


  1. Sustrans reserves the right to remove or refuse any entries from the competition for any reason.
  2. Sustrans reserves the right to move any image into a different category at any time during the competition or judging
  3. Entries will be refused or removed if in the sole judgement of the Sustrans they could reasonably be expected to breach or contravene any applicable law or bring the competition, a sponsor, or the photographer into disrepute. Such entries will be deemed as void.
  4. The decision of the judges for shortlisting is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
  5. Should the entries in any category fall below the standard required by the competition organisers and the judges, then the organisers reserve the right not to award prizes.

Data protection and privacy

Personal information provided by entrants will be used for the purposes of administering the competition and their entry in accordance with our privacy policy:

Personal data supplied by entrants, other than winners, will be deleted no later than two years after the end of the competition. The personal data of shortlisted winners will be kept to enable the photos to be used to promote future competitions, and to give appropriate credit, and also for historical record keeping where appropriate.

The public name and age (for junior entrants) provided at the point of entry will be made public if shortlisted.


Finalists agree to take part in post-competition publicity, for example attendance at an awards event.