The Purbeck Film Festival Shorts Competition 2023 was a roaring success, well attended by directors, producers, members of the cast and a vibrant audience.

The Panel of Judges were Amy Tatum, Deborah Paige, Tom Strudwick, Tim Edgar and Rob Dartnall, their biographies are included at the bottom of this article.

The Audience Award for Best Animation went to the very funny Getting To The Moon by local Bournemouth director Jacob Nicholson who unfortunately couldn’t make it to the evening because of the weather!  (special mention goes to The Man who loved Flowers)

The Audience Award for Best Live Action went to Rush (director Mike Coggan) which was about near-superhuman Oly Rush and his incredible almost impossible swims for charity that he does for environmental charities.

The David Holman Student Prize went to the animation The Man Who Loved Flowers which was an incredibly emotive film about appreciating our loved ones while they are still alive and the director Sonu Thomas gave a speech that was better than most Oscar winners. She is clearly a talent to watch

The Judges Award for the Best Film: The List Goes On – Directed by Robbie McHugh which was about rock climber Charlie (a young woman) who suffered a brain injury after a car accident but continues to hike with the help of her partner Liam.

Special Mention: Shine – Directed by Adam Pelling-Deeves – an innovative mix of live action and free form poetry by Darwood Grace that encapsulated the chaotic nature of our modern world.

Well done to all that were selected.


Tim Edgar
Tim Edgar is an Artist and Academic based in Dorset. He is an experienced lecturer, delivering contextual studies and studio based sessions in Photography, Fine Art and Film. He has worked at all levels in a variety of institutions, most recently as Head of School for Preparation for Higher Education at Arts University Bournemouth. He is an Assessor and Moderator for the University of the Arts London Awarding Body (UALAB). He has recently acted as panel member for course validations at the University of South Wales and Oxford Brookes. In 2021 he developed and delivered a Contextual Studies programme for Foundation Students at the Beijing Academy of Creative Arts.

Amy Tatum (Lecturer  Bournemouth University)
Dr Amy Tatum is a lecturer in Communication and Media at Bournemouth University. Her PhD research explored women’s responses to women in political leadership, drawing on women’s experiences of gender through narrative methodologies. Amy lectures in topics including media representation, feminist theory, gender, political communication, and campaigning. Current research includes gendered magazine coverage of American First Ladies, women’s experiences of tattooing, the construction of gender, women political leaders, and the US 2024 election. Her previous research included producing a short film that retold Mary Shelley’s work through a feminist, queer lens, which won the Best Newcomer aware at the 2021 English Rivera Film Festival.

Tom Strudwick (Head of film Arts University Bournemouth)
Tom Strudwick is course leader of the BA Film Production course at AUB (Bournemouth Film School) having been a senior lecturer since 2007. He has worked in film production, financing and distribution since 1991, Head of Acquisitions at The Works, Vice president Acquisitions and Production MGM and United Artsists, he has worked on films from Almodovar, Robert Altman, Jane Campion, Sofia Coppola, todd Haynes, Jim Jarmusch, Mike Lee David Lynch among others. He has also consulted to government agencies including UK Film Council, New Zealand and Australian Film commissions.

Deborah Paige
Deborah trained and worked as an actress, before directing in the mid 80’s. Following work as a director at The Bristol Old Vic and the Soho Theatre Co she was then appointed artistic director of Salisbury Playhouse, followed by The Sheffield Crucible, where productions included the stage premiere of Brassed Off which transferred to The National Theatre.  She has worked as a freelance director at theatres such as The Lyceum, Hampstead Theatre and the Old Vic, as well as in drama schools in London. Deborah is currently vice-chair of the Director’s Charitable Foundation.

Rob Dartnall
Rob has been Chair of judges of the Purbeck Shorts Competition for over a decade. He has a background as a producer and film maker of documentary films. In more recent years he has held lecturing posts both in Edinburgh and at Bournemouth and Poole College. He loves the film-making process and values the opportunity to encourage and inspire emerging new talent.

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