Dick Potts Legacy Fund gets OFF to a Fly­ing start

Shooting Gazette - - Shoot brief­ing -

A fund set up in mem­ory of the in­ter­na­tion­ally renowned sci­en­tist Dick Potts has at­tracted around £13,000 in do­na­tions since it was set up on April 25.

The Dick Potts Legacy Fund will cover the ex­penses of young sci­en­tists and land man­agers seek­ing to con­duct eco­log­i­cal re­search projects in their cho­sen field.

The money has been raised through pri­vate do­na­tions and a spe­cial Just Giv­ing page set up in hon­our of Mr Potts, a former di­rec­tor-gen­eral of the GCT, now the GWCT, who was a pas­sion­ate fig­ure­head in grey par­tridge con­ser­va­tion.

“The idea for the fund came about soon af­ter Dick’s death, as we re­ceived nu­mer­ous let­ters from around the world from peo­ple whose re­search he had en­cour­aged and in­spired,” said Mr Potts’ wife Olga. “When they first en­coun­tered him and his work, they were young sci­en­tists and con­ser­va­tion­ists who are now at the top of their cho­sen field. As a re­sult, we felt it would be a pos­i­tive memorial to en­cour­age the next gen­er­a­tion of peo­ple who want to study and pro­tect the ecol­ogy of farm­land in the same prac­ti­cal way.”

Let­ters came in from nu­mer­ous lead­ing fig­ures in game and wildlife con­ser­va­tion. Dr Mike Rands, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Birdlife In­ter­na­tional and currently di­rec­tor of the Cam­bridge Con­ser­va­tion Ini­tia­tive, wrote: “Thanks to his be­lief in me and his sup­port, I was able to com­plete a doc­tor­ate at Ox­ford un­der his ex­pert su­per­vi­sion.”

David Clark, head­keeper at San­dring­ham Es­tate, wrote: “He helped me in my ca­reer and gave me ad­vice so many times. I owe him so much, as do so many peo­ple.”

Dr Simon Dow­ell, sci­ence di­rec­tor at Ch­ester Zoo, wrote: “Much of my ca­reer would not have been pos­si­ble with­out his sup­port and men­tor­ship all those years ago at the Game Con­ser­vancy. I shall never for­get the day he rang me to of­fer me my PHD in Game­bird Be­hav­iour. I couldn’t be­lieve my luck in be­ing of­fered such a great op­por­tu­nity. Even so, I never imag­ined where it would lead me and what an amaz­ing jour­ney I would have along the way.”

Ap­pli­ca­tions will be con­sid­ered on an an­nual ba­sis. Awards will be at the dis­cre­tion of the fund’s ad­vi­sors. Full project re­sults will be pub­lished.

To sup­port the Dick Potts Legacy Fund on­line, visit just­giv­ing.com

the late Dick Potts was a pas­sion­ate ecol­o­gist and con­ser­va­tion­ist.

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