ANYONE who’s visited Africa on safari will have witnessed conservation efforts in protecting the continent’s most valuable treasures.
But few holidaymakers know much about those dedicating their lives to such projects.
Three years ago, the Tusk Trust launched an awards ceremony in partnership with Investec Asset Management honouring those striving to protect Africa’s endangered species and communities in wildlife zones.
The winners of this year’s Tusk Awards were announced this week at a London ceremony attended by Royal Patron, Prince William.
The Duke of Cambridge presented the Prince William Award for Conservation in Africa to Garth Owen-Smith, co-founder of IRDNC in Namibia. The lifetime achievement award applauded his pioneering work with local communities, which has resulted in 20 per cent of Namibia placed under communal conservancy management, saving many wildlife populations from extinction. His conservation model has been in used in Kenya and Mozambique.
The awards also celebrated Dr Emmanuel de Merode, director in Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of Congo, who received the Tusk Award for Conservation in Africa. Dr Merode has spent 14 years helping to demilitarise the park and improve infrastructure; as a result eco-tourism increased from zero in 2008 to over 3,000 in 2011, with numbers growing.
Prince William presented the inaugural Tusk Trust Wildlife Ranger Award, recognising “the extraordinary bravery and commitment of the men and women at the frontline of the battle to save some of the world’s most iconic species” to Edward Nderitu, who leads anti-poaching units at Lewa Wildlife Conservancy and the Northern Rangelands Trust, Kenya.
“Without people like Garth, Emmanuel and Edward – true unsung heroes of conservation in Africa – we would be facing a very dire situation,” said Prince William. Visit tusk.org
LONDON’S Great Marlborough Street Magistrates Court once hosted trials of stars such as Mick Jagger and John Lennon.
Now it’s celebrating 10 years as the Courthouse Hotel with rooms for just £10 over the festive season.
Built on a formidable reputation for comfort and elegance, it stands “as the last word in opulence for hospitality in the capital”, with 116 rooms,
from Classics, to the Magistrate Suites and the two-bedroom Lalique Penthouse Suite. It also has two restaurants, the luxurious Sanook Spa, a bar (with original prison cells), a 100-seat private cinema and a roof terrace showcasing Carnaby Street.
The Courthouse Hotel has offered one-night stays starting from £10 from December 20 – 26, for bookings made on Black Friday. For those who missed the window, there is a 10per cent discount off room rates with the use of a promotional code, 10YEARS, valid until January 2, 2016. Call 020 7297 5555 for further details.