The first youngster to win an Evening Express competition to find the bonniest baby in the north-east has been reunited with the photographer who took his photograph 50 years ago.
Charles Skene first took the picture of six-month-old David Maitland that went on to win a national competition and the first-ever bonny baby contest run by The Evening Express.
And now the two men, who found each other by pure chance, have reunited to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the pictures being taken.
David, 51, said: “Charles took the first picture of me in 1969 when I was six months old, then in 1970 when I was one.
“The first picture went on to win the Cow and Gate Bonny Baby competition, and when I was one, I won the Bonny Baby for The Evening Express.
“This was at a time when Bonny Baby competitions were really popular.
“I still have the trophies but, obviously, I did not really do anything – it was all Charles. He made sure the photo was perfect.
“Actually, one of the times my mum took me to get my pictures taken, I was wearing a blue shirt but it did not go well with the background so Charles actually got his son’s top.”
Keep up to date with the latest news with The Evening Express newsletter
David, who grew up in Northfield but now lives in Kingswells, said he stumbled across Charles, who is now the managing director for Skene Group, quite by accident.
David, a former councillor for the Dyce, Bucksburn and Danestone area who now works in the oil and gas industry, said: “I was actually researching the history of Skene House and the name Charles Skene came into the equation and it just rung a bell.
“It was not until I went back to my parents and we did some research and we found out that he was the man who actually took pictures of me as a child. So I just emailed to see if this could be the case and Charles got back to me.
“It was great to chat to him. It is really strange to see the pictures now. We are going to have another get together soon and hopefully another chat over a cup of tea.”
Before Charles founded the Skene Group, which owns the holiday and retirement accommodation across the city, Charles took over the family photography business Studio Morgan when he was just 20 years old, following his National Service.
His business grew and one of his portraits was selected to hang in the Photography Hall of Fame in Santa Barbara in the USA.
Charles, who is now 84 and lives in the West End of the city, said he has photographed hundreds of babies but it is always nice to hear from former clients.
He said: “It’s not often people come up to me and say you photographed me as a six-month-old baby – that’s unusual.
“However, I do get a lot of people coming up to me to say I photographed their wedding.
“I often don’t remember them but I will recognise a church or something that might trigger something.
“I gave up being a photographer a long time ago because I was running the business while also taking pictures of weddings and such on the weekend.
“It was a busy life. I loved photographing weddings, I really did.
“I was so busy with everything else that was going on I decided I no longer wanted to stand outside the church in the rain when the weather was bad”
“It was great to meet David. I don’t remember taking the photograph, but if I say so myself, it is a great picture!”