Wainwright Prize 2020 opens for entries

News - Prizes Monday, 23 March 2020

Includes new global conservation category

The Wainwright Prize has opened for entries, and this year includes a new category, for writing on global conservation. The nature writing winner and the global conservation winner will each receive £2,500.

The prize is run in association with the National Trust, and is supported by Quarto, which publishes the Wainwright Guides under the Frances Lincoln imprint. There is patronage from an anonymous benefactor.

Books first published in the UK between 7 May 2019 and 31 May 2020 are eligible. The deadline is 17 April. Further details here.

The longlist will be announced on 5 June, the shortlist will be announced on 16 July, and the prize ceremony will take place on 21 August.

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."

Richard Green, publisher at Frances Lincoln, 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."

Jane King, Alfred Wainwright's step-daughter, said: "Extending the remit to a second prize specifically relating to climate change is something I personally feel very strongly about. It will enhance the prize profile and make it even more immediately relevant in today's world. Nature and conservation were connected issues very close to Alfred's heart."

The winner of the Wainwright Prize in 2019 was Robert Macfarlane for Underland (Hamish Hamilton).

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