FINALISTS of the Exmoor Flag competition have been talking about the inspiration for their designs.

Eight judges shortlisted nearly 300 entries down to just five which the public will vote for.

The County Gazette spoke to some of the finalists. Jamie Louden, of Barnstaple, who designed Flag A, said: “The competition has done pretty well and it has been really interesting to see it all unfold.

“I think flags have to be clear and concise and that was the thinking behind my design – I think the essential elements of the flag are key.”

Martin Shoots, a Minehead father and designer of Flag B, drew on his experiences running along Exmoor.

He said: “I was keen to have a go because I run along the hills regularly.

“My whole family ended up entering the competition and even my six-year-old daughter Holly wanted to have a go too.”

Kathryn Roseveare decided to enter the competition to meet a key milestone in her life.

She is from Barnstaple and the youngest finalist at 17.

The designer of Flag C said: “The flag will be unveiled on my 18th birthday so I was keen to have a go and see what came of it.

“I like art and I am quite artistic ... it was a bit of fun and I was quite surprised when I was shortlisted.”

Kevin Sandiford, site manager for Dulverton Middle School, says he got his motivation for Flag D from the children at the school as well as having a passion for flags.

He said: “It was an idea the children had at the school and I thought I would have a go too.

“I have a collection of 35 country flags and on specific occasions I fly them.

“I was on holiday in Wales when I found out that I had been shortlisted. I am very pleased that I did so well.”

Jenny Stevens, 44, a graphic designer from London, said the inspiration for her design (Flag E) came from when she first visited Exmoor on a school trip, aged 14.

“It was very rainy that day but despite this I couldn’t believe how amazing the place was,” she said.

“There’s so much beauty and variation, from the forests to everything on Exmoor, even the barren land.”

The closing date for voting is September 10.

Visit the Exmoor Flag wesbite to vote for your favourite.