The National Trust has defended controversial image licensing rules in a UK-wide competition after being accused of unfairly taking over the right to publish entries.

As we reported last week, the terms and conditions state: ‘By submitting your photograph? you agree to grant the National Trust, free of charge, the right to publish and the right to license others to publish the photograph online and in all media as required.’

The contest does not limit use for the purpose of promoting the competition.

Responding to criticism that the rules exploit photographers? image rights National Trust spokeswoman Heledd Jones told us: ?This competition is a great opportunity to showcase the talent of amateur photographers. We want to encourage people to go out to see and enjoy the wonderful Welsh countryside.

She added: ?The winning pictures will be exhibited at the Royal Welsh Show, on our website and, hopefully, in the Welsh media.

?We do need to make sure that we have the right to promote the talent of the winners and, therefore, we ask that everyone who enters is happy for their pictures to be shown in these media.?

Last week photographer David Dunnico described the rules as a ?rights grab? and condemned the National Trust for assuming the right to license them for free.

The contest, which is organised by the National Trust’s Welsh office, is themed on the Welsh Countryside.