John Muir Award

Connect, Enjoy and Care for Wild Places

John Muir Award

The John Muir Award encourages people of all backgrounds to connect with, enjoy and care for wild places. 

The Award is inclusive, accessible, and non-competitive, though should challenge each participant.  It encourages awareness and responsibility for the natural environment through a structured yet adaptable scheme, in a spirit of fun, adventure and exploration. 

Award Criteria 

To achieve a John Muir Award, each participant must: 

The John Muir program is an environmental award scheme designed to be as flexible as possible to allow for self-learning and discovery no matter what age or ability (although it is best suited to upper key stage 2 and above) and focuses on wild places. 

Avon Tyrrell Manor House in the New Forest National Park with trees and grass surrounding building drone image

Discover Avon Tyrrell and realise its value as an outdoor space

Explore the site in a range of ways which include various activities and navigation exercises.

Learn how to protect and conserve the site through recycling, surveying wildlife or removing invasive species.

Boys around a table drawing and making bottle rocket out of cardboard

Share your experiences through conversations, poems, pictures, reflection games and presentations.


Discovery Award – four days/25+ hours minimum time commitment 


To be delivered on site at Avon Tyrrell and off site independently. 

Delivered by youth workers/teachers (4 hours) 

Intro to John Muir award – 2 hrs 

Biodiversity, New Forest National Park, Outside access and country code, Areas of outstanding natural beauty, – 2hrs 

These sessions are approx. 30-45 mins long and can be delivered as one training session or as a series of shorter sessions 

Youth Group with Youth Worker wearing harness and helmets in the forest ready to do zip wire

Aims of residential including John Muir four challenges and how they will be achieved. Intro to the residential/Campfire 

Half-day navigation off site around New Forest. Bringing in all that was learnt in pre-residential sessions re biodiversity and country code etc. Documenting fauna and flora found in the habitat.  

Using data collected on forest walk clear flora which does not belong in the heathland and create habitats for the various animals who live here. 

The program ends with the sharing activity where everyone reflects on the program and thinks about what they can do to share their experiences further i.e. School assembly, fundraising, posters etc. 

Share: create their presentation/posters etc to share what they have learnt and experienced during the programme. 

Reflect on experience and complete John Muir four challenge review to show met criteria for the Discover award.