The shortlist for the Wainwright Golden Beer Book Prize, which celebrates the best books about nature, the outdoors and UK travel is announced today. The seven shortlisted titles are:
Love of Country by Madeleine Bunting (Granta)
The Otters’ Tale by Simon Cooper (William Collins)
The Running Hare by John Lewis-Stempel (Doubleday)
Where Poppies Blow by John Lewis-Stempel (W&N)
Wild Kingdom by Stephen Moss (Vintage)
The January Man by Christopher Somerville (Doubleday)
The Wild Other by Clover Stroud (Hodder & Stoughton)
Now in its fourth year, the Wainwright Golden Beer Book Prize celebrates the books which most successfully reflect the ethos of renowned nature writer Alfred Wainwright’s work, to inspire readers to explore the outdoors and to nurture a respect for the natural world.
This year’s shortlist is evidence of the continued creativity and strength in nature writing today. It includes two books with conservation at their heart (The Running Hare and Wild Kingdom), two books which look at nature’s role in a journey of emotional discovery (The Wild Other and The January Man), close studies of an environment and the creatures that inhabit it (Love of Country and The Otters’ Tale) and an account of the relationship that WW1 soldiers had with nature (Where Poppies Blow).
Chair of Judges Julia Bradbury comments;
“The judges are delighted to have settled on such a strong shortlist and what an honour it is to sing the praises of these terrific books. Because the quality of nature writing is so high, we have taken the unprecedented move of shortlisting seven books rather than six. These books paint a picture of the natural world as dynamic, varied and beautiful and we hope that in reading them people will be inspired to go and explore the UK’s wonderful natural environment.”
Joining Julia Bradbury on the judging panel for the 2017 prize are: TV presenter Matt Baker; Editor of the National Trust Magazine, Sally Palmer; chair of both Gardener’s Question Time and the Wainwright Society, Eric Robson; Mail on Sunday journalist, Sarah Oliver; and ex-Chairman of the Campaign to Protect Rural England, Peter Waine.
The prize shortlist will be celebrated at a party at Stanfords bookshop in London on Tuesday 27 June. The winner will be announced on 3 August at an event in the National Trust Arena at BBC Countryfile Live at Blenheim Palace.
Supported by Wainwright Golden Beer and the Wainwright estate and in partnership with the National Trust, the winner will receive a cheque for £5000. Gaynor Green, Wainwright Golden Beer, marketing manager comments; “Wainwright Golden Beer is delighted to be sponsoring this exciting award again; it captures the essence of discovery and the area outdoors for a new generation of readers, explorers and adventurers (and drinkers).”
Bookshops and libraries are invited to enter the Wainwright Golden Beer Book Prize Display Competition. Tweet an image of your Wainwright Shortlist or Winner display before 31 August. The bookshop or library that puts on the winning display will win 10 National Trust day passes and 24 bottles of Wainwright Golden Beer. Click here for full details and terms and conditions.