A volunteer crew member at New Quay RNLI has won the charity’s national Photographer and Film-maker of the Year competition 2008.

Hanna Nuttila’s winning image shows the Pwllheli all-weather lifeboat, which came to the aid of the 35-foot sailing yacht, Galasma, in force nine severe gales, high waves and poor visibility in Cardigan Bay. The rescue was a long and arduous one for the volunteer lifeboat crews aboard the New Quay and Pwllheli all-weather lifeboats.

Entries to the competition were submitted by RNLI volunteer lifeboat crew members and RNLI lifeguards from around the coast of the UK and Ireland.

Hanna was presented with framed certificates and a photograph of the winning image at the London International Boat Show.

The incident she captured happened on September 6, north of New Quay. The yacht had experienced total failure of its electronics and engine. Weather conditions were bad with very rough seas, poor visibility and severe gale force winds.

Hanna said: "Having reached the yacht we took her under tow and made way towards Aberystwyth, but due to the severe weather conditions and wind direction the Coxswain decided to tow the yacht north towards Pwllheli. After almost five hours at sea, Pwllheli lifeboat launched and the tow of the yacht was handed over to the Pwllheli crew. We arrived back into New Quay about six hours later."

The RNLI Photographer and Film-maker of the Year (2008) winning images were exhibited on the RNLI’s stand at the London International Boat Show.

She added: "It’s an honour to be recognised for the photo, but this award is really to be shared with all the crew who were out on the shout that day in very difficult conditions."