Dr Mary Gillham

Mary Gillham Archive Project


Dr Mary Gillham MBE (1921 - 2013) was a pioneering female naturalist and prolific wildlife author, who took an active interest in our natural heritage for over 50 years. In 1959 she was part of the first Antarctic expedition to include women, and in 2008 she was awarded an MBE for services to nature conservation. She spent many years educating people about their natural heritage, as a lecturer for Cardiff University, and campaigned tirelessly for nature conservation throughout her life.

In 2013 Dr Gillham passed away and left a significant archive to SEWBReC. The eloquent writing, beautiful illustrations and fascinating photographs combine to give a unique insight into Dr Gillham’s life and the history of nature conservation in South Wales. The archive also contains a wealth of scientific data, which is currently locked away in inaccessible and irreplaceable paper documents.

From 2016 to 2018, after securing Heritage Lottery Fund support, SEWBReC ran the Dedicated Naturalist project; you can learn more about the project and this inspiring woman on the Mary Gillham Archive Project website.