An 11-year-old Aviemore schoolboy made a nod to his namesake – by creating a new Christmas light for his hometown.
Hamish Ball, who shares the same name as the first polar bear cub born in the UK in 25 years, designed the decoration as part of a competition launched by local charity the Aviemore Community Enterprise Company.
Primary six students from the class of 2019 were tasked with coming up with a new illumination as part of efforts to replace the town’s 16-year-old display.
It has now been erected on Grampian Road at the heart of the Highland community.
Upon returning to Aviemore from boarding school in Perthshire, the 11-year-old, who dreams of being an Arctic explorer, saw his creation come to life for the first time.
He hopes that perhaps his design will be something to remember his favourite animal by.
Thousands of people have ventured to the Highland Wildlife park, near Kingussie, to catch a glimpse of beloved cub Hamish in the three years since he was born,
“Polar bears are actually my favourite animal so I decided to use that as my design,” competition winner Hamish said.
“I like the Christmassy feeling of the polar bear and the star. I like snow and the Artic and I like bears so a bear that lives in the Artic is the bear for me.
“It’s pretty amazing. When I heard that I won I was like “really, have I?” because I didn’t expect to win. It was quite overwhelming.”
He added: “I like art quite a bit and my art teacher has put me forward to do an art scholarship at senior school.
“I like the results and I like looking at my pictures and thinking that I have drawn those pictures. It’s quite calming and relaxing.”
The young lad’s creation was one of four designs placed on the town’s notice board during a public vote, which saw him secure an overall majority over his fellow classmates.
The light will now be erected each year from October through to April.
Hamish’s proud mum Kyla said seeing her son’s hard work in lights “brought me to tears.”
She said: “It really is a faithful rendition of what he had designed. It’s perfect.
“Hamish actually wants to be an arctic explorer when he is older. That’s his dream job.
“It’s the most perfect design for him to have done.”
“He loves art and design; it’s probably his favourite subject at school,” she added.
“He always loves to draw and create anything so it’s the perfect encapsulation of Hamish in a project, by drawing and designing a polar bear.”
Carole Long, treasurer and secretary of the town’s local charity said: “People have taken Hamish to their heart because they see him as local and the kids all love him.
“Hamish’s design was an overwhelming winner. By the time the first ten votes came in we know what light was going to win.
“The light is absolutely wonderful. It’s a cracker for the first one.”
The Aviemore based charity have now relaunched the competition for a second year running, with primary six students beginning to compile their winning designs.