Lees Court Estate Keeper Shayne Dean wins Bellamy Award

The National Gamekeepers’ Organisation (NGO) Educational Trust has awarded Shayne Dean, gamekeeper at Lees Court Estate in Kent, the NGO Educational Trust Bellamy Award for his part in helping to develop an education programme on the estate.

NGO Bellamy Award

The Lees Court Education and Research Network (LEARN) was set up to cover the sporting, conservation and agricultural aspects of the estate. Since the inception of LEARN in 2013, Shayne has worked with students at Plumpton College, the local primary school and the Scouts, as well as being involved in visits to the estate by the CLA, NFU, local farming groups and others. As well as his work towards educating the public on conservation and the role of gamekeeping, Shayne was instrumental in the estate winning the Bronze Purdey Award in 2013, and has organised a multitude of fund-raising events for the NGO, the NGO Educational Trust and cancer-based charities.

Shayne Dean commented: “It’s a huge honour to have won the NGO Educational Trust Bellamy Award, and it’s fantastic for the estate to be acknowledged for the work that has been done. It’s been a big team effort to get LEARN off the ground, and Countess Sondes, who has been the driving force behind this has been a huge inspiration to us all.”

Brian Hayes, NGO Educational Trust Administrator, commented: “Shayne is a truly worthy winner of the NGO Educational Trust Bellamy Award, being not only passionate about educating a wider public and introducing them to what wildlife management is all about, but also having played a big part in the Estate’s Purdey Award. The aims of the NGO Educational Trust are to promote awareness of the need for sustainable wildlife management in the countryside, and to stress the significance of the conservation work carried out by keepers, and Shayne is a shining example of both these principles.”

The NGO Educational Trust launched the Bellamy Award in 2010 to recognise those who display exceptional creativity and initiative in promoting the gamekeeper’s role in sustainable countryside management. The trophy received by Shayne Dean is made from a piece of bog oak many thousands of years old. It was presented to the NGO Educational Trust by the conservationist (and NGO Patron) Professor David Bellamy to symbolise the enduring nature of mankind’s relationship with the living landscape, and is awarded along with a cheque for £250.