The Plowden Medal for Conservation was awarded to Icon members Professor Jane Henderson ACR and Stephen Clare ACR MBE at St James’s Palace on 29 September in recognition of their contribution to the field of conservation.
Established in 1999 to commemorate the life and work of the late Hon. Anna Plowden CBE (1938 – 1997), the gold medal was endowed by the Royal Warrant Holders Association, of which she was Vice-President.
The Plowden Medal is awarded annually to an individual who has made a significant contribution to the advancement of the conservation profession and whose nomination would be widely welcomed within the conservation community. It covers all aspects of conservation be they practical, theoretical or managerial – and is open to those working in private practice or institutions. A Selection Board drawn from the conservation community, the Royal Collection and the Royal Warrant Holders Association selects the winner from the nominations. This year the board were so impressed with the entries that they decided to present the medal to two individuals.
Based in Cardiff, Professor Jane Henderson ACR received the award for her outstanding leadership and development of new generations of conservation professionals, her essential role in the development of the profession and her continuing commitment to bringing leading research and innovations into conservation practice in the UK and internationally.
Conservation is such a wonderful profession. We are a group of people whose passion is to make things that are special to people stay special. To be recognised along with Stephen Clare for having made an outstanding contribution to an outstanding profession is truly thrilling.
Find out more about Jane and her career in this interview.
Stephen Clare ACR MBE, Director of Holy Well Glass, is a stained glass conservator based in Somerset who received the award for his outstanding contribution to stained glass conservation and his advocacy for, and support of, student and early career stained glass conservators. Alongside Stephen’s outstanding conservation treatment, his commitment to the dissemination of good practice and the professional training of highly skilled conservators is Stephen's long-term legacy to stained glass conservation.
We are enormously proud of our Royal Warrant as stained glass conservators by Royal Appointment to Her Majesty the Queen. Therefore the presentation of this prestigious award at St. James’s Palace by the Royal Warrant Holders Association particularly resonated with us. I know that Anna Plowden was a great trailblazer for the status of conservators in private practice, so this award gave me particular pleasure as a conservator in private practice. It was most enjoyable, and an honour to share the platform with Professor Jane Henderson, who is a friend, and whose work I greatly admire.