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Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge to announce the winner of the Natural History Museum’s prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge, Patron of the Natural History Museum, will reveal this year's winner of the prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year award at the competition’s first virtual awards ceremony, livestreamed from the heart of the Museum on Tuesday 13 October at 20.00 BST. 

Her Royal Highness visited the Natural History Museum ahead of the online awards ceremony to prerecord the top-secret announcement in the iconic Hintze Hall. Patron of the Museum since April 2013, The Duchess of Cambridge praised Wildlife Photographer of the Year’s ability to connect people with the natural world through wonder and curiosity. Her Royal Highness will say, ‘The skill and creativity of this year’s images provide a moving and fascinating insight into the beauty and vulnerability of life on our planet’.

The Natural History Museum’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year has been recognising the best nature and wildlife photography every year since 1965. Seen by millions of people around the world, the award-winning images inform and inspire through resonant stories about our planet and encourage people to protect it. 

Hosted by BBC presenters and wildlife experts Chris Packham CBE and Megan McCubbin, this year's awards ceremony will be an event like no other. Viewers will be treated to an evening of celebration, exploring the beauty and rich diversity of nature as the winners of each of category are announced. Around the world and under oceans, from urban environments to remote habitats, online audiences will be transported to moments in the natural world they might not see otherwise. This new format will share the stories behind the award-winning images, spotlight fascinating species and surprising animal behavior and underline the connections between the important work of the photographers and the Museum’s 300 scientists in tackling the planetary emergency.

This is the second time that The Duchess of Cambridge will join Wildlife Photographer of the Year in honouring photographers at the annual awards ceremony. To celebrate the fiftieth year of the competition in October 2014, Her Royal Highness awarded both Grand Title winners, including the Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year to the then nine-year-old Carlos Perez Naval. Truly a competition for all ages and abilities, Wildlife Photographer of the Year encourages the next generation of young photographers to tell vital stories about our natural world.  

Selected from over 49,000 entries from around the world by a panel of international experts, this year’s winning images are gathered into a captivating exhibition and displayed on stunning lightboxes. A favourite on the Natural History Museum’s calendar, the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition will open at the Museum on 16 October 2020 before touring across the UK and internationally. This year, the exhibition includes a special new display ‘Anthropocene’, diving deeper into a selection of the winning images which illustrate humanity’s impact on the planet.

Associate sponsors for the upcoming exhibition at the Natural History Museum are renewable energy company Ørsted and camera manufacturer, Leica.


Notes for editors

Please contact Josephine Higgins or Alex Killeen at the Natural History Museum Press Office.

Tel: +44 (0)20 7942 5654

Mobile: +44 (0) 7799 690151

Email: wildpress@nhm.ac.uk

The Wildlife Photographer of the Year awards ceremony will be streamed live from 20.00 BST on Tuesday 13 October on the Natural History Museum’s website, the Museum's YouTube account, and Twitter and Facebook page.

Viewers will be encouraged to join the conversation by posting questions on YouTube and Facebook for a panel of experts to answer, and sharing with hashtag #WPY56

Tickets are now on sale for the Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition at the Natural History Museum in London, opening to the public on 16 October 2020 and closing on Sunday 6 June 2021. It's essential that all visitors book a ticket in advance, and weekend tickets are selling out quickly.

From 16 October 2020, the Natural History Museum will return to regular opening hours, from 10.00-17.50 (last admission 17.15) on Monday – Sunday. Book your tickets: www.nhm.ac.uk/wpy

Prices from: Adult £14.95, child £9.95, concession £11.95. Free for Members, Patrons and children under four. 

About Wildlife Photographer of the Year:

Wildlife Photographer of the Year was founded in 1965 by BBC Wildlife Magazine, then called Animals. The Natural History Museum joined forces in 1984 to create the competition as it is known today. The competition is now run and owned by the Natural History Museum.

About the Natural History Museum:

The Natural History Museum is both a world-leading science research centre and the most-visited natural history museum in Europe. With a vision of a future in which both people and the planet thrive, it is uniquely positioned to be a powerful champion for balancing humanity’s needs with those of the natural world.

It is custodian of one of the world’s most important scientific collections comprising over 80 million objects. The scale of this collection enables researchers from all over the world to document how species have and continue to respond to environmental changes - which is vital in helping predict what might happen in the future and informing future policies and plans to help the planet.

The Museum’s 300 scientists continue to represent one of the largest groups in the world studying and enabling research into every aspect of the natural world. Their science is contributing critical data to help the global fight to save the future of the planet from the major threats of climate change and biodiversity loss through to finding solutions such as the sustainable extraction of natural resources.

The Museum uses its enormous global reach and influence to meet its mission to create advocates for the planet - to inform, inspire and empower everyone to make a difference for nature. We welcome over five million visitors each year; our digital output reaches hundreds of thousands of people in over 200 countries each month and our touring exhibitions have been seen by around 30 million people in the last 10 years.