A STUNNING photograph of the annual firework display at Dartmouth Regatta has earned a Kingswear woman a month in the Women's Institute calendar.

Virginia Stevens, 63, usually only takes happy snaps while on holiday, but she surprised herself when she managed to capture the essence of last year's firework spectacle in a perfect freeze frame shot.

Her photo also impressed the Devon branch of the WI and it selected it from dozens of entries for inclusion in next year's calendar for the month of August.

Mrs Stevens took the shot from her living room window at Orchard Terrace last summer, using the digital camera she had been given by her sons Martin and Matthew.

Her photograph shows an explosion of brilliant white towers above the River Dart, highlighting the skeletal outline of the three- mast ship dominating the river and the inky black masts of a cluster of yachts at Darthaven Marina.

A starburst of twinkling lights on the hills of Dartmouth and a floodlit St Saviour's Church provide an effective backdrop to the unusual scene.

'I don't take many photographs – just fun holiday snaps,' Mrs Stevens said.

'I only get one good picture in a thousand and this was it. It was sheer chance that it came out right. I wouldn't have been able to do it without the instructions, because it was taken at night.

'The great thing about a digital camera is that it goes on and on, you don't have to worry about how many shots are left on the film – you can just snap away.

'I am absolutely delighted the photograph is in the WI calendar. I've never had anything in it before and it helps to promote Kingswear and the WI in general.'

Mrs Stevens has been a WI member for more than 30 years and joined the Kingswear branch eight years ago.

The Devon WI calendar will be available in mid-August and to order a copy phone 01392 255386.

Kingswear WI meets on the third Wednesday of every month at 2.15pm at the Trust Room and visitors and new members are always welcome.