Guidance for Judges and Lecturers

Although most camera clubs are similar in many ways, each has their own ways of doing things, so to reduce confusion on the night we’ve prepared the following notes to help our judges and guest lecturers.

  • Emergency contact
    If you have any problems on the night, please call Andy Hyde our Chairman on 07917 154808.
  • Our meetings
    We meet at the Silver Birch Room in Christchurch Methodist Church, Bedford Rd, Hitchin, SG5 1HF and start at 7.45pm aiming to finish around 9:45.
  • Getting to Christchurch Hitchin
    1.       Coming from the A1(M), take the exit at Junction 8 to HITCHIN along the A602.
    2.       After approx 3 miles you will come to a large roundabout.  Take the 3rd exit [Signposted BEDFORD (A600)].
    3.       At the next roundabout take the 2nd exit [Signposted BEDFORD (A600) & TOWN CENTRE] – this is a one way system.
              a)       Get in the right-hand lane [Signposted TOWN CENTRE Parking] and go past 2 pedestrian traffic lights.
              b)       At the next traffic lights turn right and get into the left-hand lane [Signposted TOWN CENTRE Parking Short Stay].
    4.       You will pass Waitrose on your right and NHS Bedford Road Health Centre on your left.
              a)       After the next set of pedestrian traffic lights you will see the modern Christchurch on your left.
              b)      Turn left immediately after this church to enter the free Short Stay Car Park.
              c)       The car park is immediately after a bus stop and red pillar box on your left.
              d)      On your right is ZEO church.


  • Map
    The location of Christchurch can be found on the following link (Click ‘Contact Us’ and then click ‘View Larger Map’).
  • Parking
    There is a small car park attached to the church, however it does tend to fill-up quickly, can often be full if there are other events going on in the church, and unfortunately we can’t reserve a space. We’d therefore recommend you aim to arrive around 15 minutes early.
    In the event of the car park being full street parking is available in Brand street, and at other paid car parks around Paynes Park.
  • Finding the Silverbirch Room
    Normally we will have someone in the car park to greet you as you arrive, however should something go wrong the room we use is at the far end of the building. The easiest way to reach the Silverbirch room is to walk all the way along the front of the building, and then round the “left” side as you look at the building. Our room is the right hand side as you come in.
  • Arrival
    On arrival the chairman or delegate will welcome you to the club, let you know where the toilets are, etc. and offer you a drink.
  • Payment/Expenses
    • Like many clubs we prefer to make payments for your expenses/costs via Bank transfer. Our treasurer will make arrangements for this upon your arrival, or during the break. We can also make payments via cash or cheque, however please advise us in advance if you would like to be paid in this way.
  • Timings
    • Our evenings start promptly at 7:45. The chairman will normally make a short address before introducing the judge and part 1 of the evening (normally the digitial competition)
    • We have a break around 8:30 for approximately 15 minutes. In HCC we do our announcements immediately before the coffee break
    • We aim to finish the meeting at 9:45, although we can overrun by 15 minutes if necessary.
  • About our members
    Within Hitchin Camera Club we have a very diverse membership from Full-time professional photographers to new comers to photography as a hobby.
  • Judging and Presentation Aids
    We can on request provide a laser pointer and a PA system.
  • Special Dietary requirements
    We normally provide Tea and decaffeinated coffee, and selection of biscuits. We do use cow’s milk and because the kitchen is shared we cannot guarantee to be nut free. Please let us know if you have any special requirements.

Competition Notes
The following notes will tell you a little about how Hitchin Camera Club normally run our competitions and hopefully this will avoid any confusion on the night.

  • Run Through
    We always offer a run through showing each digital projected image for a number of seconds prior to the digital image judging.
    Prints will be placed on view before the competition and can be studied either before the evening starts or during the coffee break.
  • Holding back
    We can hold images back for both digital projected images and prints allowing you to make a final decision having had a chance to review all of the images in detail.
  • Scoring
    Within Hitchin Camera Club we ask you to score using a 10 point scale with half-marks allowed.
  • Winners and Runners up
    In some Hitchin Camera Club competitions we are simply looking for scores to go towards an overall prize at the end of the year, however for others we will be looking for a Winner and Runner up in each category (prints and digital) as well. In order to avoid one photographer winning both the Winner and Runner-up prize we may ask you for a second runner-up if necessary.
    We will guide you on the night as to whether Winners and Runner’s up are needed.
  • Prints and/or Digital
    Most Hitchin Camera Club competitions have categories for both Prints and digital images, however we will make this clear in the invite and at the start of the evening. We will normally view Digital images first.
  • Handling prints
    We will arrange for someone to handle prints for the judge and to move them to and from the print stand.
  • Pacing
    We limit the member’s entries so that we have typically have 1:00 minute to 1:30 per image. There is of course flexibility in this, but the Chairman or Competition secretary will help you keep track and will warn you if we’re falling behind schedule, or can take our time.
  • Feedback
    Judging is of course not just about giving a score but constructive criticism to help us improve. We would particularly welcome guidance on improving the technical aspects of our images both in the taking and post processing of the images and help with building strong and interesting compositions.
  • Talking about 10’s
    Once the judging is complete we have a tradition where we allow anyone who scored a 10 to speak for a couple of minutes about how and why they took their image.