Award won by HRH Prince Philip re-launched for thousands of schoolchildren

Posted: 23rd April 2024

The award gained by the late Prince Philip as a schoolboy which inspired him to set up the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is being re-launched by Gordonstoun to benefit all local children.


The Moray Badge was brought back for one year in 2021 in the run up to the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee to encourage local pupils to get active during Covid and reconnect with nature following several lockdowns.  The scheme was a great success with 5,500 school children taking part in numerous outdoor and creative activities.


Now, Gordonstoun is bringing back the award permanently with 12,000 pupils – aged between five and fourteen years – in the Moray area invited to take part when it goes ‘live’ in the Autumn.


The launch of the scheme is part of Gordonstoun’s ongoing service commitment to working with the local community and schools in Moray. Gordonstoun is renowned for its ‘character education’, giving their students the opportunity to take part in numerous activities outside the classroom from sailing on the school’s own training boat to becoming a member of Gordonstoun’s Fire Service or Coastguard Rescue Team.


Gordonstoun is funding the permanent reintroduction of the Moray Badge scheme so that thousands of primary and secondary pupils in the area can also experience a structured programme of activities and adventures that connect them with the natural world and help them to discover new passions.


The award was first set up by Gordonstoun founder Kurt Hahn in 1937.  Prince Philip was given the silver Moray Badge – the top award at the time – for completing various life-saving challenges and expeditions during his time at Gordonstoun. This inspired him to launch the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award in 1956.


The updated version of the Moray Badge will see children asked to complete a range of challenging activities, encouraging them to explore the wonders of nature, the outdoors, wildlife and creativity.


Lisa Kerr, Principal at Gordonstoun, said:


“The Moray Badge Platinum Jubilee initiative was a great success, with 5,500 pupils taking part in a range of activities to help them recover from lockdown.


“We are thrilled to bring back the Moray Badge on a permanent basis for up to 12,000 children in Moray, as part of Gordonstoun’s continued service to the local community.


“Gordonstoun will be funding the Moray Badge so that pupils can benefit from a structured and supported outdoor activities programme without any cost to their families or school.


“The Moray Badge was established by Gordonstoun founder, Kurt Hahn, to encourage local children to get involved in challenging outdoor activities to help grow their confidence.


“When Prince Philip was at Gordonstoun he threw himself into school life and took part in life-saving skills and various physical challenges to get the silver Moray Badge. He went on to coach children from other schools to help them gain their Moray Badge and I’m sure he would be pleased to see the award is now being brought back permanently to benefit pupils today.”


Schools will be provided with ‘Bingo-Style’ activity sheets for each level of the Moray Badge. Participants will need to complete a minimum of eight boxes on the activity sheets per level to be awarded their badge.


Moray pupils aged 5-14 years can progress through three levels – Brass, Copper and Platinum – by taking part in activities such as planting trees, orienteering, pottery, walking and litter picking, creating pictures in the sand and participating in team challenges.


Major General The Hon Seymour Monro, Lord Lieutenant Moray, said: “The Moray Badge Platinum Jubilee provided many wonderful and interesting challenges for over 5,000 young people.


“I am delighted that Gordonstoun will lead the running of the Moray Badge again involving as many schools in Moray as possible. It is most appropriate as the original Moray Badge was started by Gordonstoun along with other Moray schools when the late Prince Philip was a student there.


“I encourage young people to take part in the challenges, I am sure they will enjoy them.”


HRH The Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh visited Gordonstoun in 2022 to present 125 schoolchildren with commemorative Moray Badges to mark The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

Categories: BSA News