The Jurassic Coast World Heritage Team went to London on 6th June for the Royal Geographical Society Awards and Medal Ceremony. The team were awarded the 2016 Geographical Award for “outstanding collaborative work to foster student and wider public engagement with the Jurassic coastline”.
Along with 16 other award and medal winners (including Bob Geldof KBE who was awarded the Patron’s Medal for raising global public awareness and challenging the causes of inequality in Africa), the team experienced a fascinating and memorable time at the RGS. This included afternoon tea, a curators’ insight into a series of remarkable artefacts (including Henry Morton Stanley’s original boots which he wore across Africa!) and the awards ceremony itself.
The team were thrilled to find themselves seated next to Michael Palin who warmly congratulated them. Nicholas Crane presented the awards and was delighted to welcome the whole Jurassic Coast team onto the stage – a first for the RGS as awards are generally only presented to individuals. He described the impressive partnership approach, with a specific mention of the Jurassic Coast Trust, to the management of the Jurassic Coast which has been adopted since its designation as a World Heritage Site.
Sally King, Jurassic Coast Visitor Manager said: “It’s a huge honour to receive this prestigious award. Being in the esteemed company of the other award winners, and members of the audience, brought home just how special it is. It is a credit to all those who are involved in looking after our Jurassic Coast, whether they be scientists, teachers, volunteers or tourism businesses. As a team, we are immensely grateful to those who have allowed us to ‘push the boundaries’ way beyond what was originally expected upon World Heritage Site designation, namely the two local authorities, Dorset and Devon County Councils, who have funded us for 15 years.”