Queen's Anniversary Prize awarded to Cranfield University

1st December 2017

Cranfield University is delighted to announce that, for the fifth time in its history, it is the proud recipient of a prestigious Queen’s Anniversary Prize. Cranfield is one of only eight institutions to have won the award on five or more separate occasions.

Cranfield received the award for its research and education in large-scale soil and environmental data for the sustainable use of natural resources in the UK and worldwide. This is the first time in the Prize’s history that an award has been given for soil science.

Sir Peter Gregson, Chief Executive and Vice-Chancellor of Cranfield, said: “We are honoured to be winners of the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for the fifth time. Soil science is an integral part of the University’s past, present and future. Information held at Cranfield continues to influence land management policy nationally and internationally. This award is a well-deserved acknowledgement of the work of current and former academic, technical and support staff.”

Cranfield has a long history of soil science research and education. In England and Wales alone, the equivalent of over 200 years of fieldwork has identified over 750 different types of soil. Together with a unique, parallel international soils archive, the University has created the largest collection of soil information in Europe.              

The University has been designated by the Department for Environment and Rural Affairs as the national reference centre for soils.

Professor Ian Boyd, Chief Scientific Adviser at the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said:  “Soils are an essential resource and I am delighted that their importance has been recognised through this prestigious award to Cranfield University. I congratulate Cranfield on their leadership in this important field.”

Professor Leon Terry, Cranfield’s Director of Environment and Agrifood, said: “We are delighted to be the first university to win an award for soil science.  For more than 40 years, Cranfield has been ensuring that practical advice on land use is linked to the protection of soil assets in the national interest. Our information and soils expertise is shared nationally and globally to ensure soil is recognised as a vital resource and as an essential natural capital.” 

The Queen's Anniversary Prizes for Higher and Further Education 

The Prizes are a biennial award scheme within the UK honours system.  As such they are the UK’s most prestigious form of national recognition open to a UK academic or vocational institution.  The honour is distinctive in being granted to the whole institution, irrespective of the area of work being recognised and rather than to an individual or department.  The scheme was established in 1993 with the approval of The Queen and all-party support in Parliament.

All eligible universities and colleges in the UK are invited to enter the biennial rounds of the scheme.  The assessment process is overseen by the Awards Council of the Trust which makes the final recommendations which are submitted to the Prime Minister for advice to The Queen.