About the Judges
Head Judge Tyrone McGlinchey FLS FRSA, said:
"The judges get to view to numerous quality entries during shortlisting (which are all blind-judged), the most difficult part of the judging process is deciding on the final places. Thanks to our website and democratic voting scoring system - it makes these decisions much more balanced and informed."
The judges for the competition include the following. For venue-specific special awards, the competitions are co-judged between the venue and IGPOTY.
Benedict is a photographer and award-winning journalist, he is former editor of Digital Camera magazine, the UK's best-selling photography magazine (known as Digital Camera World overseas).
Benedict recently founded Brain’s Foto Guides Ltd, with a mission to create beautifully designed and crafted photography location maps and guides.
He has been writing and presenting photography how-to articles and videos for the last decade for titles such as; Amateur Photographer, PhotoPlus, NPhoto, Practical Photoshop and Professional Photography.
He has also had a vibrant and varied career as a professional photographer from a fine art degree in photography and exhibiting prints to working as a cruise ship photographer, running photography workshops and shooting commercial assignments in Miami.
Clare is editor of the Chelsea Magazine Company’s 'The English Garden' and was previously editor of 'Garden News'.
With 15 years' experience in gardening magazines, she started her career working for the Royal Horticultural Society’s members’ magazine 'The Garden'.
Clare is a keen gardener and trained in horticulture at Pershore College. She has a passion for plants and beautiful gardens and is a former Chairman of the Garden Media Guild.
Clive has photographed many of the world's best gardens, including HRH The Prince of Wales's own private garden in Scotland, Lord Rothschild's private garden in Corfu and Lord Heseltine's private garden in Oxfordshire. His passion for the subject comes across in every image that he makes.
His work has appeared in hundreds of books as well as in countless magazines, calendars and brochures. Clive regularly gives masterclasses in flower and garden photography for The Royal Horticultural Society and now for IGPOTY.
Emma is RBG Kew’s Digital Engagement Manager, responsible for the Kew Gardens social media channels. Emma loves telling visual stories about Kew and particularly enjoys creating content for Instagram. As part of her role, she gets to see all of the amazing photos shared by visitors to Kew and picks the best of the best to share on social media.
When not at work, she can usually be found either painting plants and flowers, or taking her own photos of them.
James’ career path started back in the early 1990s after completing a week’s work experience at Oxford Scientific Films, knowing then that he wanted to combine his love of nature with the visual arts.
After completing an honours degree in Biological Imaging at the University of Derby, he then went on to be a technical and scientific illustrator at Oxford University Press which led to his move to the National Trust back in 2005.
Since then, James has worked for many years as a photographer creating images for use across the full spectrum of the Trust’s visual output. James has shot everything from gardens to coastline, paintings to interiors and everything in-between.
Since finishing study at the Academy of Art in Düsseldorf, Jürgen has become one of the most renown garden photographers worldwide. His ambition is to show the fascination of gardens and the beauty of plants, to create unique pictures of magic and beauty.
Awarded the Deutscher Gartenbuchpreis (German Garden Book Prize) 2014 for Best Image Book: 'Black Box Gardening' (Ulmer Verlag).
In 2009, 2011 and 2012 was winner of the Garden Media Guild (GMG) award: Features Photographer of the Year. In addition in 2010, 2012 and 2015 was GMG Photographer of the Year.
Lady Henrietta Spencer-Churchill
Lady Henrietta Spencer-Churchill studied Art History in Italy and France before enrolling at the Inchbald School of Design in London. She started her Interior Design business “Woodstock Designs” in 1981 having worked for 3 years with Diana Hanbury and Jean Monro.
She specializes in the restoration and refurbishment of period and listed buildings with emphasis paced on conserving their historic value and features whilst bringing them into the 21st century. Many of her commissions are abroad which involves the challenges of learning about and incorporating local cultures and trends.
She also formed a separate company in the USA “Spencer-Churchill Designs Inc” and has worked on many new build houses in the Georgian Style.
As well as her Interior Design business much of her time is dedicated to the overseeing of the restorations of her family home Blenheim Palace, the running of the Blenheim Foundation and organising special and fund-raising events.
She is the author of 11 books and has carried out many lectures and TV appearances in the UK and USA where she also has licensing deals in furniture and rugs.
Mark Bentley started as a newspaper reporter before moving into books and magazines. He is editor of Black+White Photography, which celebrates the best in contemporary black & white photography across a wide range of genres; and Outdoor Photography, which specialises in landscape, nature and wildlife. He has also edited photography books by Steve Mulligan and Sue Bishop.
Professor Beverley Glover PhD FLS
Beverley studied Plant and Environmental Biology at the University of St Andrews before a PhD in Plant Developmental Genetics at the John Innes Centre in Norwich. She established her research group at the University of Cambridge in 1999, where she is also a Fellow of Queens' College. Since 2013 Beverley has been Director of the Cambridge University Botanic Garden and Professor of Plant Systematics and Evolution.
Her research is focused on the development, function and evolution of floral features which enhance pollination success. This work is important because the enormous species diversity of the flowering plants can be attributed, at least in part, to the reproductive isolation resulting from the recruitment of animals as pollen vectors. This understanding also underpins research into security of animal-pollinated food crops, providing opportunities to support plant breeders in their efforts to optimise yields of key crops.
Richard Barley MCIHort FLS
Director of Gardens
Royal Botanic Gardens Kew
Richard Barley joined the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew in 2013, relocating from Victoria, Australia. He was formerly Chief Executive Officer of Open Gardens Australia, and before that a Director within the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, where he worked for 30 years.
Richard has extensive experience of balancing the needs of a world-class horticultural site and visitor attraction, while maintaining and developing important scientific living collections. In his current role he has overall responsibility for the living collections and landscapes of the Kew and Wakehurst sites, and also for Kew’s School of Horticulture, Learning and Participation programmes, Interpretation and Safeguarding, together with a selection of capital building programmes.
Richard holds a degree in Applied Science (Horticulture), from Burnley College (University of Melbourne) and is a Trustee of the Castle Howard Arboretum Trust, the National Garden Scheme, and the Kew Guild; and is a Council member of the Chartered Institute of Horticulture.
Sabine Freifrau von Süsskind
Sabine is a judge for the long-established IGPOTY special award competition - 'European Garden Photography Award' or 'EGPA' for short. This competition is run in partnership with Schlosspark Dennenlohe in Bavaria, Germany, which has the largest rhododendron garden and landscape park in South Germany; which she runs as Managing Director and lives in with her husband Robert von Süsskind, known as 'The Green Baron'.
Sabine holds two Master's degrees from Donau University, the first an MBA in Business Administration and the second an MSc in Online Marketing. She serves as President of the Bavarian Garden Network, lectures at Mittweida University of Applied Sciences, and is a member of the Garden Media Guild.
Tony Kirkham MBE VMH
With his roots firmly in the world of Trees, Tony is former Head of Arboretum and Horticultural Services at The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, where he looked after an amazing 14,000 specimens.
Author and Editor of countless publications on trees, Tony is also the Presenter of the acclaimed BBC series, 'Trees that Made Britain'.
With this wealth of experience, he is ideally placed to be our guest judge for the 'Trees, Woods & Forests' category. In 2019, Tony was awarded the highest horticultural honour by the RHS; the Victoria Medal of Honour.
Tyrone McGlinchey FLS FRSA
Tyrone has worked professionally in the horticultural stock library business as Manager of Garden World Images for over 20 years, and has run IGPOTY since 2014 where he is currently Managing Director. He is a professional garden photographer (PGPA) with over 20 years management experience in the printing industry.
Former Vice Chairman of the Garden Media Guild and a fellow of the Linnean Society of London, he is also a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.
Valda Bailey FRPS
The Royal Photographic Society Representative, Portfolios Judge
Valda Bailey is a freelance photographer living in Sussex who first became passionate about photography as a young teenager.
Her approach to photography is greatly informed by her background in painting and her influences come as much from artists as photographers.
She is motivated by colour and form and the tension and dynamism that these components can bring to an image.
The impact of the many years she spent painting is obvious in the way she approaches her photography. She is drawn towards imaginative abstraction and the challenges that present themselves when moving beyond the act of merely replicating what is in front of the lens.
Her methods include the use of multiple exposures and camera movement in order to simplify the detail in a scene. It is a way of working which is controllable to a certain degree but still has a significant element of unpredictability about it. Much like watercolour painting.
She spends a great deal of time teaching people how to extend creative thinking and find their voice in a world that is already submerged beneath the weight of an incalculable number of photographic images.
For the last 4 years, Victoria has been manager of the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art located in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
She has a degree in Ancient History and Archaeology, and an MA in Art Gallery and Museum Studies. Her career in Museums and Galleries has spanned over 15 years.
In her spare time you can find her restoring furniture, at an exhibition, or playing with her nephews.