Project takes to global stage for science awards

Quarry Life Awards winner: Dr Phil Wheeler (left) and Dr Sue Hull from the University of Hull pictured with Hanson UK chief executive officer Patrick O'Shea (second left) and head of environment Martin Crow (right) at the awards ceremony
Quarry Life Awards winner: Dr Phil Wheeler (left) and Dr Sue Hull from the University of Hull pictured with Hanson UK chief executive officer Patrick O'Shea (second left) and head of environment Martin Crow (right) at the awards ceremony

A biodiversity project in Wykeham is going head to head with competition from Ghana and the Czech Republic for an international award after claiming the UK title.

The research project, carried out by a team from the University of Hull at Hanson’s sand and gravel quarry in Wykeham, has won the UK section of the inaugural Quarry Life Awards.

After claiming the £4,000 first prize, the project, entitled ‘restoration of silt lagoons for wading birds at Wykeham quarry, will now go forward with winning projects from Ghana and the Czech Republic to compete for the global award - which has a prize fund of £24,000.

A second project looking at water vole and white clawed crayfish conservation carried out at the quarry by a team from Leeds University took third place in the UK competition.

Patrick O’Shea, chief executive of Hanson UK, who presented the awards, said: “We were extremely impressed by the calibre of the entries from the UK. The winning project highlighted the potential benefits of the restored quarry silt ponds at Wykeham to replace natural habitat for wading birds, much of which has been lost in areas of lowland agriculture.

“It outlined practical recommendations for the improved management of the silt lagoons and we are keen to see how we can use the research to benefit other sites.”

The international winners will be announced in Heidelberg, Germany on December 13.