The Ron Cleevely Award for Best Journal Article

The Award has been established in appreciation of Ron Cleevely, former Senior Scientific Officer in the Department of Palaeontology at the Natural History Museum, London, as a result of a generous donation from his widow Ros.

The Award will be made following nominations and voting by members attending the Annual Society Meeting, held each year in April. The President will have the casting vote, if this is required. In considering nominations for the award for the Best Journal Article published in the previous 12 months in the Russell Society Journal, members might wish to consider:
– Novelty value of the article
– Significance of the contribution to British mineralogy
– Quality of the illustrations
– Bibliographic rigour to ensure a thorough literature search has been undertaken.

Although primarily an eminent palaeontologist, Ron’s fame in palaeontological circles lay more in his exceptional knowledge of 18th and 19th century collectors, their specimens and associated natural history works. He had undertaken extensive research on the Sowerby family in particular, and recently published a fascinating account of the development of early mineralogy in southwest England: “Collecting the New, Rare and Curious – Letters selected from the Correspondence of the Cornish Mineralogists Philip Rashleigh, John Hawkins & William Gregor”.

Ron was an invited speaker at the Bob Symes memorial meeting at the Geological Society in December 2016, and gave a thought-provoking address about the preservation of historical data, with particular reference to the changing nature of records, the ephemeral nature of electronic media and its potential loss in the future. He was a kind and thoughtful person, always willing to impart some of his immense knowledge about collections and collectors, and he would surely have been supportive of any initiative which encouraged enthusiasts to document and record their researches.