Blog - QRA News & Notices

Member Consultation: Electronic Distribution of Quaternary Newsletter

The QRA Executive is considering a move to electronic distribution of Quaternary Newsletter (QN) and Circular from 2017 onwards. This issue has been raised several times at committee meetings in the past, but for a number of reasons we have not felt able to successfully implement this strategy. The key considerations are as follows:

QN is a tangible benefit of membership. This is especially the case for members who, for various reasons, do not engage regularly with the QRA via its other activities such as meetings or as grant recipients. Personal preference also seems to divide the argument: some members simply prefer to read QN as a physical document, while others do not mind.

Finance. The cost of printing and postage was around £8700 in 2015 (and has been closer to £12k in previous years). Although some copies would still have to be printed for institutional and copyright members, and there will be some additional website hosting costs, if most members chose to read QN electronically then the not-insignificant savings could be used to support other QRA activities.

Editorial and aesthetic. An electronic version of QN would provide increased flexibility, enabling us to include colour figures at no charge and allow an easier, more immediate means of distribution (at present, the delay between collating each volume and members receiving QN – through printing and posting – is about 3-4 weeks). It would also allow the inclusion of reports that are a little more detailed than the current page restriction allows.


  • QN goes electronic for most members from 2017 onwards. Existing members will be asked to ‘opt-in’ to receive hard copies if they still wish to do so. New members will not be offered this option.
  • New issues of QN will be announced by means of the existing weekly QRA email (and in the ‘News’ section of the website). Current issues will be available initially as open access and then archived in the Members’ Documents section.

Your say:

The Executive Committee will discuss this issue at its next meeting in May 2016, with a view to making a decision. We would very much welcome input and comment from members by the end of April, by whichever means are convenient, including email, letter, or via a short online response (link below). The Executive Committee will report back to the membership over the summer.

Take the survey:

Click here to take the survey (Survey Monkey):  QRA Consultation Survey

President: Professor Peter Coxon

School of Natural Sciences, Museum Building, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2, Ireland


Secretary: Dr Mick Frogley, Department of Geography, Chichester 1 Building, University of Sussex, Brighton BN1 6DL

Undergraduate Dissertation Prize Winners

The winners of the Undergraduate Dissertation Prize for 2015 were announced at the recent AGM. The top two entries (from 14 submissions in total) were of such high quality that the judges were unable to separate them: two prizes were therefore awarded. The judges noted that the originality of the work and the depth with which the students engaged with the wider literature was of near professional quality in both cases, and that the dissertations could easily form the basis for academic publications. The Association warmly congratulates both winners:

Neil Adams
(Royal Holloway)
A palaeoenvironmental analysis of the Early Pleistocene ‘Siliceous Member’ at Westbury Cave, Somerset, UK

Tom Dunn
Greenland Ice Sheet supra-glacial lakes: their relationship with bed topography, ice thickness and ice flow velocity

Abstracts of the winning dissertations will be published in a forthcoming issue of Quaternary Newsletter.  The Association wishes to thank the examiners, Ian Candy and Ian Evans, and to acknowledge the continuing support of Catherine Souch and others at the RGS for the administration of the prize.

James Croll & Lewis Penny Medal Winners

The QRA is delighted to announce the 2015 James Croll and Lewis Penny Medal winners, who were honoured at an awards ceremony at this year's ADM at Royal Holloway. The James Croll Medal was awarded to Professor Alayne Street-Perrot (Swansea) and the Lewis Penny Medal to Dr Tom White (Oxford).

Alayne Street-Perrot (Swansea)

Tom White (Oxford)

Full citations will be provided in a future issue of Quaternary Newsletter.

Further details of the awards can be found on the prizes page of the website.

2016 Honorary Members

Four new Honorary members were nominated and approved unanimously at the Annual General Meeting at Royal Holloway in recognition of their outstanding services to Quaternary science. The 2016 Honorary members are Chris Caseldine, Rick Shakesby, Tony Stuart and David Sugden. The Association would like to extend its warmest congratulations to these new Honorary members. Full citations will be provided in a forthcoming issue of Quaternary Newsletter.

Chris Caseldine (Exeter)

Rick Shakesby (Swansea)

Tony Stuart (Durham)

David Sudgden (Edinburgh)

Top 50 Quaternary Sites

During 2014, as part of the 50th year celebrations of the QRA, we sought to compile a list of the 50 most significant Quaternary sites within the Britain as nominated by you, the QRA community.  We had an overwhelming response to this initiative with over 80 sites submitted and these 'top sites' are ALL now published and available to download here: .

If you didn't get a chance to submit your top site last year, it is not too late! We are hoping to develop this initiative into a long term project involving the Quaternary community.  For more details please visit the webpage above.

Glen Roy NNR status retained

Recognising the importance of Glen Roy and the wider commitment and interest demonstrated in submissions from a range of organisations (including the QRA) and individuals, the SNH Board decided at their meeting on 13 August to:

·         remove the threat of de-declaration of the NNR status; 

·         retain the Glen Roy NNR; 

·         engage with interested parties; and

·         explore proposals for the future of the NNR.

The Board also agreed to review progress in 18 to 24 months.


For a copy of the SNH press release:


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