The British Society of Underwater Photographers (BSoUP)
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BSoUP's Sponsors

Kungkungan Bay Resort

Winning Imaes by Paul Colley

Cameras Underwater - Sponsor of the BSoUP/DIVER Print Competition 2015 - 2018 and BIUPC 2015 and 2016

Brtish Divers Marine Life Rescue - Sponsors of BSoUP / DIVER Print Competition 2017

Carpe Diem, Sponsors of BUIPC 2017


Diver Magazine - Sponsor of the Annual Beginners Portfolio Competition and the BSoUP/DIVER Print Competition

DiveQuest - Sponsor of the Underwater Excellence

BSoUP Splash-In 2014

British Underwater Photography Championship

Organised by the British Society of Underwater Photographers

Portland Marina, Dorset on Saturday 5th July 2014

The competition is now closed. See Results

Sponsored by

O'Three Scuba Tours Worldwide Under Water Visions
  AP Valves MArine Conservation Society
Scimitar Diving Paul Colley Underwater Photography Nudibranchs of the South West

The 2014 BSoUP Splash-In will take place on Saturday 5th July at Portland Marina, Dorset. All underwater photographers are invited to participate, whether they are members of BSoUP or not.

Prizes, trophies and individual awards will be presented for winning images in each category.  All prizes except that for the Humorous category will be awarded by an independent panel of judges; the Humorous category will judged by the audience present.

Viewing and judging of the images entered will take place at the Harbour Lights bar and restaurant on the Saturday night.  Earlier in the evening they will be putting on a meal for us (details to follow).

ADVANCED REGISTRATION is now open.  This must be completed by Wednesday 25 June.
You may also register in person on Friday 4th July.

Note that registration will also be possible on the morning of 5th July, but this must be arranged in advance with the organisers. However there will be a £5 late registration charge for registering and paying on Friday night or Saturday morning.  We strongly urge you to register and pay in advance as this minimises what is required during a very busy Friday night registration session.


There are three main categories: Marine Life, Mankind in the Sea and Compact Cameras.

A maximum of one entry per category is allowed with each competitor allowed two entries in total to these categories.  Users of DSLRs or mirrorless cameras may enter one image each in the Marine Life and Mankind in the Sea categories.  Users of Compact Cameras may either enter one image in the Compact Camera category and another (different) image in one of the other two categories, or they may enter one each in the other two categories.  They are not required to enter the Compact Camera category.

In addition all competitors may enter one image into the Humorous category.

Images entered in the Marine Life, Mankind in the Sea and Compact Cameras are also eligible for the Overall Winner Trophy.

Competition category definitions

1. Marine Life (ML) - any image which shows marine life - animals, plants, scenery and/ or wrecks, but does not include any people.

2. Mankind in the Sea (MS) - an image which shows one or more people in the marine environment.

3. Compact Cameras (CC) - any image taken with a camera without interchangeable lenses.  The category excludes mirrorless cameras with interchangeable lenses. Note that add-on ‘wet’ lenses on the outside of the housing are fine.  

4. Humorous - any form of image manipulation including composite images (several images joined together) is allowed as long as all of the components were taken in the sea on the day.


1. Each competitor must be at the Harbour Lights  between 20:30 and 22:00 on Friday 4th July to complete registration by demonstrating that their memory card is empty and taking a photograph of a numbered BSoUP identification card.  Note that each competitor may use only one camera and register only one memory card. As explained above, competitors who have not pre-registered may also register and pay on Friday but there will be a £5 late registration fee. If a competitor cannot arrive on Friday night and wishes to enter on Saturday morning this can be arranged but must be specially requested in advance.

2. Competitors may take as many images as they wish, as long as they are on the memory card which has been registered. No images should be deleted from the memory card during the competition. Only one memory card may be used and in only one camera.  Images may be taken in any format but entries must be entered in JPEG format (see 5 below for more details).

3. Competitors must hand in their chosen images on Saturday afternoon between 16:30 and 18:00 in the Scimitar Divers classroom. NO IMAGES WILL BE ACCEPTED AFTER 18:00.  Images may be downloaded to the competitor's own computer to check quality, and to perform any whole image optimisation as defined below, prior to downloading to BSoUP's computer. Competitors are urged if at all possible to prepare their images for entry by renaming them, converting them to jpeg format (if necessary) and putting them on a memory stick before submitting them for entry as this speeds up the entry process significantly.  For those who do not have the technology to do this in advance a laptop will be made available in the entry area but additional time should be allowed by the competitor as this must be completed before the end of the entry period (18:00) and there is likely to be a queue!

4. MINIMAL digital manipulation using sharpening, colour correction, brightness and contrast adjustment may be made to the whole image ONLY except in the Humorous category (see above under COMPETITION category definitions). No cropping is allowed. The BSoUP committee members present at the event reserve the right to examine the original untouched image. Their opinion as to whether an image submitted for the competition is eligible will be final. In addition, the judges reserve the right to examine the untouched images on their shortlist to determine whether the amount of postproduction affects their choice.

No cropping is allowed. The BSoUP committee members present at the event reserve the right to examine the original untouched image. Their opinion as to whether an image submitted for the competition is eligible will be final. In addition, the judges reserve the right to examine the untouched images on their shortlist to determine whether the amount of postproduction affects their choice.

5. Images should be submitted in JPEG format in the same size and resolution as they were taken - no change to size or resolution should be made. File names should comprise the category, competitor number and photographer's name, e.g. ML_15_JoeBloggs.jpg, MS_15_JoeBloggs.jpg, etc. 

6. Original, unchanged images must be kept on the card and the card brought to the evening event.  For all winning and runner-up images the original, unchanged image will be downloaded by the organisers at the end of the evening to ensure that they were taken on the competition day and have not been changed other than as allowed by the rules.  You are advised to write your name on the card, which will be returned by Sunday morning at the latest.

7. Submitted entries will be projected later in the evening at the Harbour Lights (after the BBQ/ buffet dinner at the same location) for viewing by the audience present and by the panel of judges. The audience will be asked to vote for the winner in the Humorous category.  The judges will withdraw to make their decision as to the winner and runner-up for each of the other categories and the winner of the Grand Prize.  At the end of the evening the winners will be announced and trophies and prizes presented.

8. BSoUP reserves the right to publish winning images both in the Society magazine ‘in focus’ and on the website Winning images may also be used in future promotional material such as magazine publications for the event royalty free, but copyright remains with the photographer.

9. BSoUP fully endorses the Marine Conservation Society’s Photographer’s Code of Conduct.  Photographers must take all reasonable care not to disturb marine life and the marine environment in pursuit of images.  Any images which in the opinion of the judges or committee members present have been created as a result of handling, placing or interfering with wildlife may be disqualified.

10. All images must be taken under water on the day of the competition.

11. The organisers' decision on any matters arising from these rules shall be final.


We are delighted to announce that the judges will be underwater photographers Gavin Parsons, Stuart Philpott and Dan Bolt.


If you have any questions about the competition or the rules please contact Brian Pitkin.


1. The winning Marine Life image will receive a one week diving holiday for two in the Maldives (exclusive of flights and taxes) courtesy of Scuba Tours Worldwide, a goody bag full of goodies courtesy O’Three and a copy of the iBook ‘A photographic guide to Nudibranchs of the South Westby Bernard Picton, Dan Bolt & Terry Griffiths courtesy of Dan Bolt.

2. The winning Mankind in the Sea image will receive a voucher for £250 courtesy of Under Water Visions, two days diving for two people courtesy of Scimitar Divers, a goody bag full of goodies courtesy of O’Three, a voucher for £100 courtesy of DiveLife and a copy of the iBook ‘A photographic guide to Nudibranchs of the South West by Bernard Picton, Dan Bolt & Terry Griffiths courtesy of Dan Bolt.

3. The winning Compact Camera category image will receive a drysuit and a goody bag full of goodies courtesy of  O’Three, a day’s tuition for compact camera users courtesy of Stuart Philpott, and a copy of the iBook ‘A photographic guide to Nudibranchs of the South Westby Bernard Picton, Dan Bolt & Terry Griffiths courtesy of Dan Bolt.

4. The runner-up in each of the above categories will receive a copy of ‘Winning Images with Any Underwater Camera: The Essential Guide to Creating Vibrant Photos’ by Paul Colley courtesy of Paul Colley and and a year’s membership to the Marine Conservation Society.

5. The winning Humorous image will receive dive goods to the value of £200 courtesy of AP Valves and a goody bag full of goodies courtesy of O’Three.


1. The Overall Winner will receive a glass trophy.

2. The winner and runner-up in each category, excluding Humorous, will receive individual glass trophies.

3. The winner of the Humorous category will receive the AP Valves Trophy and an individual glass trophy. 


Saturday 21st June

Deadline for postal registration with payment by cheque for the Competition.

Deadline for online registration with electronic payment for the Competition.

Deadline to book Saturday evening buffet meal tickets.

Friday 4th July


Participants register their digital cards in the Harbour Lights in the bar.

Saturday 5th July


Submit digital entries at Scimitar Divers classroom.


Meal at the Harbour Lights bar & restaurant (details to follow).


Projection of images and judging at the Harbour Lights.


Announcement of results and presentations of prizes.


The Society would be pleased to hear from any member or guest who will be in Portland on the day of the competition and would be willing to help in any way. Volunteers are required to hand out voting slips, count votes, answer enquiries etc. Please contact any committee member if you would be willing to help your Society on this busy weekend.


Scimitar Diving is making its boats available for the competition with places to be booked individually.  Currently two hardboats are being held, each taking twelve divers, with the possibility of a third boat as required.  Scimitar's boat prices are £40 per diver for the day, going down to £30 if the weather is bad and they have to stay local.  Booking is directly with Scimitar 07765 326728.  No deposit required.  Note that this arrangement is between Scimitar and the individual divers and does not involve BSoUP.


All rooms are to be booked directly with hotels.  
The Hotel Aqua has 26 ensuite bedrooms  01305 860 269
The Eastney Hotel is a B&B 10 minutes drive away –
Near to the Aqua Hotel in Castletown is the Royal Breakwater (pub accommodation)


Participants are responsible for their own safety and for the proper use of their diving and photography equipment. Divers must dive within the limits of their own dive certification level and according to the local diving regulations. Divers are responsible for their own insurance.

If you dive in Portland Harbour, as the harbour is now owned by Portland Port Ltd, some harbour dues now need to be paid to dive certain sites if you’re bringing your own boat. If you want to dive the Countess of Erne, HMS Hood, The Spaniard (Enicuri), Bombardon Unit, Landing Craft or the Dredger, you need the following dive permits: RIB size – up to 6.1m, £6.83 per week or £2 daily. For RIBs up to 9.15m it’s £10.50 per week or £3.15 daily. Craft must display an ‘A’ flag and maintain continuous radio contact on channel 74. If diving on an unbuoyed wreck an SMB must be used.

BSoUP accepts no responsibility for the safety of participants during their diving activity, nor does it accept responsibility for any loss or damage to personal equipment that may occur as a result of diving activities.


BSoUP extends its thanks to all our sponsors.

BSoUP's Splash-in Competition Winners

Digital (overall and category winners)

2014 Overall Winner - Cathy Lewis Mankind in the Sea - Terry Griffiths Marine Life - Cathy Lewis
  Best Compact - Colin Whyte    
2013 Overall Winner - Dan Bolt Mankind in the Sea - Dan Bolt Marine Life - Alex Tatttersall
  Best Compact - Paula Bailey Reflections - Dan Bolt  
2012 Overall Winner - Tim Priest Mankind in the Sea - Charles Erb  
  Best Compact - Paula Bailey Crustacea - Rob White  
2011 Overall Winner - Dan Bolt Mankind in the Sea - Derek Haslam Abstract - Rob Cuss
    Marine Life - Dan Bolt  
  Best Compact - Colin Yule Compact - Mankind in the Sea - Martin Rishton Compact - Abstract - Mark Brooke
2010 Overall Winner - Charles Erb Close-up - Julie Kaye Animal Portraits - Cathy Lewis
    Wide-angle - Martin Davies  
2009   Close-up - Rick Ayrton Animal Portraits - Jim Garland
    Wide-angle - Neil Skilling  
2008   Close-up - Cathy Lewis Animal Portraits - Helen Wehner
    Wide-angle - Charles Erb  
2007   Wide-angle - Arthur Kingdon Fish - Alan James
    Close-up - Alan James  

Film & Digital (overall & category winners)

2006 Overall Winner - Dave Peake Film Wide-angle - Martin Davies Film Close-up - Jan Maloney
    Digital Wide-angle - Trevor Rees Digital Close-up - Alan James
2005   Film Wide-angle - Martin Davies Film Close-up - Jean Manson
    Digital Wide-angle - Charles Erb Digital Close-up - Charles Erb

Film (category winners)

2004 Macro - Cathy Lewis Wide-angle - Dave Peake Fish - Peter Ladell
2003 Macro - David Stevens Wide-angle - Dave Peake Fish - Peter Hewitt
2002 Macro - Ken Sullivan Wide-angle - Len Deeley Fish - Bill Hewitt
2001 Macro - Tom Cowan Wide-angle - Guy Middleton  

Film (overall winners, no categories)
  2000 Ken Sullivan 1991 Kevin Cullimore 1982 Peter Salmon
  1999 Derek Haslam 1990 Kevin Cullimore 1981 Warren Williams
  1998 Pat Morrisey 1989 Paul Clark 1980 David McBride
  1997 Peter Tatton 1988 Peter Rowlands 1979 Warren Williams
  1996 Linda Pitkin 1987 Warren Williams 1978 Dave Nance
  1995 Dave Nardini 1986 Peter Scoones 1977 Geoff Harwood
  1994 Dave Peake 1985 Kevin Cullimore 1976
  1993 Brian Pitkin 1984 Les Kemp 1975
  1992 John Souness 1983 Peter Hewitt 1974 Warren Williams

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