One of Luskentyre’s famous white ponies is to appear as a calendar star in the BBC Countryfile calendar for 2020 – and she could even be on the front cover.

Visitor David Brown is one of hundreds of photographers, amateur and professional, who capture a picture of Eriskay pony Isla and her companion, Highland pony Toby, on the dunes at Luskentyre each summer.

But David’s picture is the one that made the grade in one of the year’s most prestigious photo competitions. His image, Dune Drifter, has been selected as one of the 12 BBC Countryfile images of the year for 2020.

The theme for the competition was ‘beauty and the beasts’ and judges John Craven, Cerys Matthews and Simon King picked Isla’s portrait alongside 11 other images. They included a badger sniffing bluebells, oystercatchers in flight and a mountain hare covered in snow.

The 12 pictures will all be featured in a calendar sold in aid of the BBC’s Children in Need appeal – last year the calendar sales raised £2.4 million for the charity – but still up for grabs is the front cover of the calendar.

A public online vote opened on Sunday (August 25th) to determine whether Isle will be the calendar’s cover girls. Voting closes on Monday (September 2nd) and you can vote for Isla’s picture at https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/1GCDYHM2yQyfXhxNtZ3DvZT/the-countryfile-photographic-competition-2019

Isla’s owners Isobel and Murdo Mackay are quite used to their horses attracting attention. Isobel told welovestornoway.com: “We see them on Facebook every second day. People seem to like seeing them there and we don’t mind at all if people enjoy them by taking pictures.”

The picture shows David Brown’s image ‘Dune Drifter’ (David Brown/BBC Countryfile).