Dauntsey’s has announced the winner of the 2016 Richard Sandbrook Award. Upper sixth pupil, Moira Connor, has been awarded £625 to fund her project which aims to raise awareness of the growing problem of plastic pollution in our seas and on our beaches, and to support the Marine Conservation Societies’ (MCS) ‘Beachwatch’ campaign.
It is estimated that our seas contain 5 trillion floating pieces of plastic which can now be found on almost every beach in the world, including on polar icecaps and in the stomachs of 90% of sea birds.
Moira plans to combine a backpacking tour of the Hebrides with carrying out beach litter surveys on a number of the more remote beaches in the Western Isles of Scotland, following the MCS standard litter survey methodology, sending her results into the MCS. Moira plans to travel with friends who will help conduct the surveys and raise money for MCS through sponsorship.
James O’Hanlon, Head of Careers, who promotes the Award at Dauntsey’s, said: “The Committee and the Sandbrook family’s view was that Moira’s bid showed a lot of initiative and – although relatively small scale – would have a significant impact. I am sure Richard Sandbrook would have greatly approved of the award being made to her.”
Moira Connor, Award winner, said: “I think that Richard Sandbrook, as an active protestor and campaigner against waste and pollution, would have approved of this project. It does not involve jetting across the world but instead ‘treads lightly’ and tackles environmental issues closer to home that are also globally relevant. By using public transport – trains, buses and ferries I will be keeping my carbon footprint in check.”
The Sandbrook Award was established by the Old Dauntseians Association in 2009 to commemorate the work of former pupil Richard Sandbrook, OBE (1946-2005) who was the co-founder of Friends of the Earth.
The award is open to current Sixth Form pupils at Dauntsey’s and Old Dauntseians, aged 18-25 and is aimed at anyone who is planning a trip, project or research which promotes sustainable development in some shape or form. Applications may involve existing or new projects, study or research, and can be anywhere in the world regarding any area of sustainable development.