Dara McAnulty has won the Wainwright Prize for UK Nature Writing 2020 for his extraordinary debut Diary of a Young Naturalist. At just sixteen year's old, Dara is the youngest person ever to win a major literary prize.
Written when he was fourteen year's old, Diary of a Young Naturalist chronicles the turning of Dara's world and breaks the mould of modern nature writing. The book portrays Dara's intense connection to the natural world whilst also giving us a fascinating insight into his perspective as a teenager with autism juggling exams, friendship and a life of campaigning.
Now in its seventh year, the prize - named after nature writer Alfred Wainwright - is awarded annueally to the book which most successfully inspires readers to explore the outdoors and nurture a respect for the natural world.
This year’s Nature Writing judging panel was chaired by TV presenter Julia Bradbury, and her fellow judges were: Geoff Duffield, Wildlife Trust volunteer and former publisher; Andrew Willan, Wealden Festival Director; Patrick Neale, Bookseller Jaffe & Neale; Jessica J Lee, Editor WillowHerb Review; Celia Richardson, Director of Communications and Insight, National Trust.