Wainwright Prize launches new global conservation award

Wainwright Prize launches new global conservation award

The Wainwright Prize for UK nature writing has launched a new award recognising narrative books that reflect conservation or climate change and how it impacts on nature and the outdoors.

Its Global Conservation Prize will run concurrently with the existing award. Both prizes are awarded in association with the National Trust and are now supported by an anonymous benefactor. Wainwright Golden Beer will no longer be sponsoring the prize, but Quarto will continue to support it, organisers said.

Alastair Giles, director of the prize, said: “Over the last seven years, the Wainwright Prize has grown commensurately with the phenomenal writing in the nature genre in this new golden period. As we change from a sponsored prize to one supported by an anonymous benefactor, we felt it sensible to review the criteria.

“The judges have often expressed that, whilst there have consistently been very high-quality shortlists, such a tight UK-centric prize negated the inclusion of some very important books surrounding conservation and climate change which, by definition are more global in scope. Consequently, we felt that the time was right to expand the prize to a second prize and shortlist to cover this field of writing.”

The submissions period has been opened and extended owing to the coronavirus pandemic, and will now close on 17th April. A £5,000 prize fund will be shared and presented to the authors of the winning books.

Richard Green, publisher at Quarto's Frances Lincoln, which publishes Wainwright's Guides, said: “Alfred Wainwright’s books have inspired generations of walkers and shown countless readers a new way to see the British landscape. The unique aesthetic of the books and Wainwright’s inimitable personality place these among our greatest books about the outdoors. Since Frances Lincoln took over the publishing for Wainwright in 2003, we have revised and updated the books, celebrating 60 years in print along the way. This fantastic prize does not only raise the profile of nature and conservation writing but also introduces a new generation of fans to the Wainwright brand.”

Only books first published between 7th May 2019 and 31st May 2020 are eligible. If the book is not currently published, but is due to be published before 31st May 2020, manuscripts and proofs are accepted. More details are available on the prize website.