Lifetime Achievement Award 2015

The BookTrust Lifetime Achievement Award is given to a children's writer or illustrator whose body of work, in the opinion of the panel of judges, merits recognition for a lifetime's achievement in children's literature.

Shirley Hughes: winner in 2015

We were heartbroken to hear of Shirley's passing in March 2022. During her eighty year career she wrote and illustrated much-loved children's books such as the Alfie series, Dogger, and later the Dixie O'Day series with her daughter Clara Vulliamy. In 2015 we awarded her our Lifetime Achievement Award. 

Shirley Hughes and Michael Morpurgo

Shirley Hughes, the celebrated children’s author and illustrator, was awarded the inaugural BookTrust Lifetime Achievement Award by Michael Morpurgo in 2015.

Among Shirley's most celebrated works are the Alfie stories, a series of beautifully illustrated picture books about a boy's world, and Dogger, which was voted the public's favourite Kate Greenaway Medal winner of all time.

Described by Philip Pullman as a 'national treasure', Shirley later collaborated with her daughter Clara Vulliamy on the Dixie O'Day series; the pair were described as a 'mother-and-daughter dream team'.

Shirley's first novel, Hero on a Bicycle, was published in 2012 after decades of success with her picture books, and her second novel, Whistling in the Dark, was later published by Walker Books. 

Throughout her life and career, Shirley delighted children, parents and grandparents with their favourite fictional toddler, publishing brand new Alfie books. She also reissued her very first book as author/illustrator, Lucy & Tom at the Seaside, to mark the title's 55th year in publication.

She said:

'Being chosen for the BookTrust Lifetime Achievement Award is a tremendous honour which I appreciate more than I can say. I have derived so much fulfilment from my long career, first as an illustrator of other artists' stories and then creating my own.
Best of all has been perennially encountering very young children who are learning to look with such rapt pleasure and follow a story visually long before they are able to read.'


Viv BirdViv Bird

Viv Bird became Chief Executive of BookTrust in September 2007, and in 2009 took over chairmanship of EU Read, a consortium of European reading promotion organizations who meet regularly to share knowledge, experiences and concepts, and together launched the European initiative Reading Aloud Reading Together Year 2013. She was a magistrate for seven years and a school governor for 25 years.

Michael Morpurgo

Michael Morpurgo

Michael Morpurgo OBE is the award-winning author of over 120 books for children, including War Horse, which has been adapted into a phenomenally successful stage show and film. Among his many accolades, he has won the Smarties Prize, The Writers Guild Award and the Blue Peter Book Award. From 2003-2005 he was the Children's Laureate, and he became BookTrust's President in 2013.

Martin Chilton

Martin Chilton

Martin Chilton has worked in publishing and newspapers for 25 years. He has written several books on football and was for many years the sports editor of the Evening Standard, where he was also a columnist. He has worked at the Daily Telegraph since 2007 and has been the culture editor of for the past four years. He writes about and reviews all aspects of children's literature.

Malorie Blackman

Malorie Blackman

Malorie Blackman is acknowledged as one of today's most imaginative and convincing writers for young readers. In 2005, she was awarded the Eleanor Farjeon Award in recognition of her distinguished contribution to the world of children's books. In 2008, she was honoured with an OBE for her services to children's literature, and in 2013, she was appointed as the eighth Waterstones Children's Laureate.

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