Embracing Progress

We’re excited to announce the winners of our Embracing Progress competition, having received over 100 inspiring entries. 

Our judges were struck by Emma Rix’s winning image, calling it “an image of struggle, effort and determination and triumph.”

Thank you to everyone who sent their photos in. For more information on the competition winners, please read our news story.

Independence, 18 and over (overall winner) – Emma Rix from Wolverton, Milton Keynes
‘My Daughter Doing What Other Children Do’

My Daughter Doing What Other Children Do

Emma’s daughter Maisie suffers from cystic fibrosis and a neurological condition that affects her mobility. Talking about the photo, she said: “Maisie is a very happy and positive girl and sees no reason why she can’t do the same things as her brother and sister, Isaac and Lilli. We were delighted to win the overall prize and Maisie was absolutely amazed by the comments from Hannah Cockroft who is a real inspiration to her.

“On the day we went to the woods and took the photo Maisie’s wheelchair was getting stuck in the mud and she was determined to join in the fun so decided to use her frame. 

“It was the first time she’d ever been through a muddy puddle and it was absolutely wonderful to see all the children enjoying themselves and getting covered in mud.

“Hopefully, the picture will inspire other people with disabilities to challenge their boundaries and do everything they can to achieve their goals.

People, 18 and over (joint winner) - Peter Carr from Stapleford, Cambridgeshire
'Still Singing?'

Still Singing

People, 18 and over (joint winner) - Natalie Davy from Kettering
'Meningitis took his hand but not his smile'

Meningitis took his hand but not his smile

Work/education, 18 and over – Paul Horton from Chelmsley Wood, Solihull
‘Play Scheme’

Play Scheme

Ambition, 18 and over – Peter Carr from Stapleford, Cambridgeshire
‘Get Through The Waves In Life’

Get Through The Waves In Life

Ambition, 17 and under – Sarah-Jayne Windridge-France from Horsforth, Leeds 
‘Never Give Up, Never Give In’

Never give up, never give in

The Judges

  • David Ofield – Picture Editor at Evening Standard
  • Stuart Henderson – Managing Partner at Irwin Mitchell
  • Hannah Cockroft MBE – Paralympian
  • Giles Long MBE – former Paralympic swimmer
  • Andrew Cook – Head of Fundraising, Walking With The Wounded
  • Arabella Dorman – one of Britain's leading portrait painters and war artists
  • Kevin Peake – Director of Group Sales and Marketing at Irwin Mitchell. 

About The Competition

Alongside Walking With The Wounded, we organised Embracing Progress – an online photography competition to demonstrate that every disabled person has the right to live their life, embrace their disability and achieve their goals. Our media partners for the competition were the Evening Standard, the Independent and the i.

We wanted to bring together a wide range of people who are interested in representing their vision of Embracing Progress in an educational, creative and community-spirited way. We looked for positive, empowering, attention-grabbing images.

All abilities were welcome, with winners judged on individual merit, rather than the standard of photographic technique. 

The winners from each category received iPads, along with £300 of Amazon vouchers for the overall competition winner.

Walking With The Wounded

Walking With The Wounded raises vital funds to re-educate and retrain servicemen and women who have been injured in the line of duty. They help those who have left the Armed Forces to become independent and rebuild their lives in the civilian workplace.


Images should capture an event which embraces progress towards independent living and inclusion within the local community, and shows the positive impact this has on the disabled person and their family.

Images should show someone who is embracing progress, working hard to achieve their ambitions and realise their full potential no matter how large or small the task.

Images should display the qualities, personalities and characteristics that make people distinctive and unique, not only their impairment or condition.

Images should capture someone embracing progress to learning new skills, meeting new people, working as part of a team to be successful at work or school.

Please note that there wasn’t a winner for the independence, people and work/education categories in the under 18 age group.

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