The work of an amateur photographer from the West Midlands has been recognised at a prestigious awards ceremony at the National Army Museum in London.

Colour Sergeant Phil Carr, from Sutton Coldfield, scooped the Amateur Sport and Adventure Training category of the Army Film and Photographic Competition.

He is currently employed as the communications and information systems Company Quartermaster Sergeant with 1st Battalion Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment in Dhekelia, Cyprus.

"I hadn't really picked up a camera until 2012”, Phil said. “I then started to enjoy the process and invested in my first DSLR. Since then I've lost count of how much money I've spent on equipment and upgrades."

His winning entry - Take the Strain - focused on an inter-company sports competition, held annually. He said: "The winning team gets the honour of being called Salerno Company for a year and I took some images of the tug 'o war part of the competition, capturing all the aggression on the competitors' faces.

Reacting to his award, he said: “It’s been absolutely fantastic and I’ve loved the experience because, even though I’ve entered my work before, this is the first time I’ve been nominated.

My wife is really over the moon with it all. My Second in Command is also so pleased with my involvement in the final of this competition. I’ve loved every minute of it.”

Command Master Photographer, Warrant Officer Class One Daniel Harmer, said 2019 was a benchmark year for the competition with a record number of video packages entered.

“The overall standard of what we’ve seen is a new high,” said Daniel, who is based at British Army headquarters in Andover.

“The awards is a showcase of excellence and a celebration of what was achieved in 2019. The photographer’s role is so important in capturing the British Army’s history.

"Army photographers are the professional eyes and documenters of the military actions that shape our times. Often working in extreme conditions and environments, their iconic imagery captures moments in history and very often the very deepest of human emotions with vivid honesty and clarity.  

"The excellent standard of what was submitted made it the toughest challenge for the judges, who took more than four hours to conclude the judging.”