Named after nature writer Alfred Wainwright, the prizes are awarded to the work which best reflects Wainwright’s core values and include a celebration of nature and our natural environment or a warning of the dangers to it across the globe.

The Wainwright Prize for UK nature writing:
The book should be narrative driven with a subject that must be related to nature, the outdoors or travel writing (not guidebooks) covering Great Britain and Northern Ireland as a central theme.

The Wainwright Prize for writing on global conservation:
The books in this category will reflect efforts in or, studies relating to conservation or climate change as it affects nature and the outdoors. They should be narrative driven and could be global in scope.

Key Dates: 

Submissions open – 29th March
Submissions close – 23rd April
Longlist Announcement – 24th June TBC
Shortlist Announcement – 21st July TBC
Ceremony – 7th September TBC

The winner for the much-loved 2020 Wainwright Prize for UK Nature Writing has been announced at a virtual awards ceremony on September 8th. Diary of a Young Naturalist by Dara McAnulty chronicles the turning of the then 15-year-old’s world and breaks the mould of modern nature writing. As the youngest ever winner of a major literary prize, Dara’s book is an extraordinary portrayal of his intense connection to the natural world alongside his perspective as an autistic teenager juggling exams, friendships and a life of campaigning. Mike Parker’s beautiful On the Red Hill was awarded highly commended in the category.

Interviewed by broadcaster and judging chair Julia Bradbury, watch the full interview with Dara about his winning book here:

The 2020 prize was extended to include a second category for books about global conservation and climate change, and Rebirding by Benedict Macdonald is its inaugural winner. Praised as ‘visionary’ by conservationists and landowners alike, Rebirding sets out a compelling manifesto for restoring Britain’s wildlife, rewilding its species and restoring rural jobs – to the benefit of all. Irreplaceable by Julian Hoffman was awarded highly commended in the category.

Interviewed by BBC Countryfile presenter and judging chair Charlotte Smith, watch the full interview with Benedict about his winning book here:

The Wainwright Prize are honoured to have Jon Tremaine as this year’s featured artist.


The Wainwright Prize is a literary award that was created in memory of Alfred Wainwright, whose pictorial guides to the Lakeland Fells are still available in lovingly reproduced form today. Thanks to all of the prize partners but especially to Jane King & Annie Sellar of the Wainwright Estate and Frances Lincoln Publishers who financially support the prize.


Latest News

Winners of Wainwright Prize 2020 Announced – 16-year-old Dara McAnulty wins the Prize for Nature Writing and Benedict Macdonald wins first ever Writing on Global Conservation Prize

September 8, 2020

Diary of a Young Naturalist by Dara McAnulty is the winner of the UK nature writing prize Rebirding by Benedict Macdonald is the first ever winner of the new writing on global conservation and climate change prize  The winner for the much-loved Wainwri …

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The Wainwright Prize Announces Featured Artist Jon Tremaine

July 31, 2020

The Wainwright Prize is honoured to introduce its featured artist: Jon Tremaine. His bold and beautiful artwork encompasses everything we love about nature – that it’s not just about the overall scene in front you, it’s looking harder at the details be …

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Shortlists announced for the 2020 Wainwright Prize

July 30, 2020

The shortlists for the Wainwright Prize 2020 are announced today, Thursday 30th July. Named after nature writer Alfred Wainwright, this year’s prize feels more timely than ever as our need to reconnect with nature has never been stronger. Against the b …

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