A PHOTOGRAPHER has picked up a national award less than a year after being diagnosed with cancer.

Alexandra Hill was diagnosed with stage two cervical cancer last June as coronavirus gripped Scotland.

Now, the mum-of-one, who is behind Moments by Alexandra, is celebrating after being given the all-clear and scooping the Best Wedding Photography Studio – Scotland in the Global Wedding Awards.

The photographer was nominated for the prize by a customer.

Alexandra described the success as “phenomenal” and said: “We have made a difference to someone’s experience and that means so much given the year it has been.”

The Prestonpans mum set up the business in 2012 and has two studios at Cockenzie House.

The pandemic has presented plenty of challenges over the last year, with weddings postponed.

Alexandra said: “I have not photographed at a wedding in over a year, which is devastating.

“It is hard when you have got couples on the phone in tears.

“I’m just trying to comfort them and do whatever I can to help to make sure everybody is alright.

“Our first wedding is at the end of May; I am so excited. I cannot wait!”

Two months into the pandemic and the lives of Alexandra and husband Graeme, along with eight-year-old son Nathan, were turned upside down.

She said: “I had irregular periods and never thought anything of it.

“I got in and saw the doctor and she was phenomenal – she saved my life.

“She could see something on my cervix and alerted hospital and said I needed to be seen in 24 hours.”

Alexandra attended the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, where biopsies were taken. The results showed she had cervical cancer, with radiotherapy and chemotherapy needed.

Alexandra said: “For myself, at 38, you never really think it is going to be you; that cliché.

“I’m very pragmatic and, in the room, I remember I saw the Macmillan nurse and I knew before they told me. I felt my husband reach for my hand.

“I was very driven and focused to get through it. I had moments, of course, but I was very ‘what now?’”

Positively, she has been given the six-month all-clear and is “living life to the fullest” and back at the job she loves.