ALAN Frew was perfectly placed to take this stunning shot of Scotland's newest bridge, the £1.35 billion, cable-stayed Queensferry Crossing, which is on course to open next May. Frew, 55 ("and a quarter"), is a civil engineer involved in the bridge's construction, as director of infrastructure at Arup, the company which is part of a joint venture to build the bridge.

His photograph – a long exposure, taken with a Nikon camera – was on Thursday evening declared the winner of The Herald/Royal Bank of Scotland competition celebrating the launch of a new £5 banknote.

Frew wins an overnight stay at Andy Murray's Cromlix House near Dunblane as well as £100 in photography vouchers, a piece of original artwork from the Fabric of Nature banknote design process and a lesson with a photographer from The Herald.

In an email accompanying his entry, entitled Queensferry – Nearly There!, he spoke of his excitement at "the photo opportunities in the construction of a new Scottish icon". His photograph shows the bridge before its two halves were finally connected.

The runner-up was Graeme Creamer of Dunvegan, Skye, who happened to turn 34 on the day of the awards. His shot of hares was, he says, "an example of why I love Scotland: being in the right place at the right time with the perfect light to capture (I hope) a striking image of something simple".

In third place, with a photograph of Loch Ard one morning, was Charlie Gibson, 62, of Darvel, East Ayrshire. He and Creamer win Amazon vouchers.

The theme underpinning the new set of polymer notes, of which the £5 is the first to be launched, is Fabric of Nature and the face on the front is author Nan Shepherd, whose book The Living Mountain inspired people to see the Scottish landscape in different ways.

Craig Alexander, group multimedia editor at the Herald & Times Group, said: "I was so impressed by the use of light and environment in all the finalists' photographs. I was also struck by the unusual positions that a couple of the photographers manoeuvred themselves into before pressing the shutter.

"There was also a skilful use of vibrant colour, to say nothing of the wide geographical spread in the final six entries.

"Alan Frew showed a lot of technical skill in being able to capture so much detail in his photograph of the Forth Crossing – the lights on the bridge as well as the lights on the far shore."

Also present at Thursday night's ceremony at the Royal Bank of Scotland's Banking Hall at St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, were the Makar, Jackie Kay, Edinburgh's Makar, Christine de Luca, and pupils from St Andrew's Primary in Cumbernauld.

Malcolm Buchanan, chairman of the Royal Bank of Scotland’s Scottish board, said: “This evening was a celebration of Scottish history, culture and the great country that surrounds us.

“Nan Shepherd appreciated the great things that Scotland has to offer and it was great to see so many people enter this competition to bring her work to life. We were also privileged to hear the pupils of St Andrew’s Primary recite her words in our historic banking hall.

“This is an important time in the bank’s history and we are truly delighted that so many people shared their time to help make this a special occasion.”