From questions surrounding the growing phenomenon of volcano tourism, and the plight of elephants released from zoos and circuses, to the ancient catacombs of Sanità that were once off limits, travel writer, environmental journalist, photographer and radio broadcaster, Mark Stratton has an eye for the stories that need to be told and a way of taking the reader along with him.

Named ‘Consumer Travel Writer of the Year’ at the 2022 Travel Media Awards, we caught up with Mark to find out what winning this coveted prize means personally and professionally.

Why did you enter the TMAs this year?

Living some way from London on Dartmoor and spending a large part of my year overseas, it’s good to know exactly where your writing is at and what your peers think about it. I think it’s easy to become complacent when you think you’re doing OK, so the awards offer some sort of validation of your progress and consistency.

What does it mean to you to have won this award?

A lot, it really does. I make many sacrifices for my profession, try to do my own thing, and champion environmental issues, so it’s really heartening to feel accepted for my approach. There are some great writers in our genre, so to be considered among them is really pleasing.

Will you be entering again next year?

Yes. I never have any expectations of winning but always the expectation that when I attend the event, I’ll be able to catch up with contemporaries and friends I rarely see.

Read Mark’s work here

The following articles are what swung it for the judges:

  • The Great Escape, BBC Wildlife Magazine, April 2022
  • La Palma’s volcano thrills onlookers — but should the ‘lava chasers’ be stopped? The Financial times, 1 October 2021
  • Raising Naples: how the catacombs of saints transformed Sanità, The Guardian, 9 November 2021

About the Travel Media Awards

With Morocco as headline sponsor, the winners of the eighth annual 2022 Travel Media Awards were announced at The Dorchester on 26 September. The ceremony was attended by over 300 of the UK’s leading travel media, PRs and travel industry suppliers.

As the only UK media event that solely recognises editorial excellence and achievement, 22 publications, broadcasters, journalists and photographers were honoured with a prestigious award.

Watch the key moments of the Travel Media Awards, in a film sponsored by the Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority.