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Meet our Judges!


We're so grateful to our fantastic judging panel for giving up their time to shortlist our photographs and to help support our competition, especially during these difficult times. To read more about our guest judge panel, please see below.


Alex Rotas is an award-winning British photographer. She specialises in photographing older sportsmen and women who still compete nationally and internationally through their 60s to 100+. She has held exhibitions in the UK, across Europe and in the US, and her photos have featured on the BBC national website and in numerous other online and print publications both in her native UK and across the globe. She is a frequent contributor on both TV and radio and gives talks about her work both nationally and internationally. She is working with the World Health Organisation in Geneva Switzerland to produce an exhibition of work in line with their launch of the ‘Decade of Healthy Ageing’ starting in 2020. She is currently making a documentary film called ‘the Maverick Generation’ about old female athletes. She is, above all, an anti-ageism activist, determined to challenge, through her photography, the widely held, pessimistic notions that getting old inevitably means diminished horizons, purpose, fulfilment and happiness. 


Helen Wewiora is Director / Artistic Director of Castlefield Gallery (Manchester, UK) and prior to this worked for Arts Council England whilst also co-directing her own curatorial agency. Helen has worked for Cornerhouse and the BBC, and for the Foundation for Art & Creative Technology (FACT) and Tate Education. She is a UCL Art History graduate and received an MA from the Courtauld Institute. Much of her career has focused on the practice and career development of visual artists. 



Jai Chuhan creates paintings of the human figure within a room-like space, exploring themes of home and ‘unhome’. Exhibitions of her paintings include at Tate Liverpool; The Lowry, Salford; Barbican, London and recently a solo show at HOME for Asia Triennial Manchester 2018, and internationally including in Sweden, Italy, China and recently in ArtANKARA Contemporary Art Fair, Turkey 2020. Her work is in collections including Cartwright Hall, Bradford; University of Liverpool; Arts Council England and Tate Gallery. She was the winner of the bOlder prize at the Manchester Open 2020 exhibition at HOME, Manchester.



Dr Virginia Tandy OBE is the director of a new national initiative on age and creativity hosted by Manchester Museum and funded by the Baring Foundation.The former Director of Manchester City Galleries (1998-2008) and Director of Culture for Manchester City Council (2008-2011), she was President of the Museums Association from 2006-2008 and a trustee of the Heritage Lottery Fund from 2009-2015. A board member of the Granada Foundation, she chairs Brighter Sound, a creative music charity and is a trustee of National Museums Liverpool and a member of the Fabric Committee for St Paul’s Cathedral. 



Elizabeth Lynskey has been a member of the Greater Manchester Older People’s Network for over 6 years. She sits on the Steering Group as a representative of Rochdale. In 2018 she visited the House of Lords to represent the Network as part of a committee on Intergenerational Fairness and last year appeared on the BBC in a programme on Criminal Justice. She is the mother of 1 daughter and has 3 grandchildren. She is a great lover of the arts and was proud to raise a daughter who won Young Designer of the Year. She is committed to championing the voices of older people, working in her community and challenging negative stereotypes of older people. She has been involved in the photography project from its first conception in 2019.


Amy Muthra-Shah. Prior to retirement in 2013, I worked in Education, Probation, Local Government Health and Social Care for over 50 years.

I have always been actively involved in my local and wider community as an active volunteer from a young age, growing up in such diverse communities in the UK and Caribbean opened my eyes to the need for local and global development community support.

My keen interest in diverse communities, was first sparked by my love of photography, armed with my Kodak camera I started to explore and capture my surroundings, which quickly opened my eyes to stark contrasts all around me.

My passion for community and photography persists today, as I am still ever chasing a technically perfect shot and supporting my local communities through various channels including a group I founded called the Yellow Bird Age Friendly Group, which operates in Moss Side and Hulme.



Mike Sweeney joined Piccadilly Radio in 1980 after playing with his band, The Salford Jets, at a station road-show in Manchester. It was with The Salford Jets that he finally found success, with recording contracts, a hit single and television performances, shortly followed by his big break into the airwaves of Manchester.

In his time at Piccadilly Radio, Mike worked his way through every daytime show, including ten years as the host of the Breakfast show. In 1998 Mike joined Capital Radio’s classic hits station – Capital Gold. In his ten years at Capital Gold, Mike fronted all of the daytime slots. In addition to his radio work he has also presented several TV programmes including The Young Enterprise Show, Elvis Has Just Left The Building, a classic car series and The Manchester United Debate Show.

From 2006, Mike has presented many radio shows and received numerous awards for his success, including a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2011. In 2014 he joined BBC Radio Manchester full time to present The Morning Programme. Mike was nominated for two major awards in 2017 - an ‘Aria’ and a ‘Gillard’ where he won bronze in the former and gold in the latter. He was also the lead vocalist with 60s hit band The Mindbenders and still does the occasional date with the Salford Jets. His new project for 2019 and beyond is ‘Mike Sweeney’s 60s Classics Live’ a musical celebration of the great bands and music of The 60s.