Flowers for Elephants: How a Conservation Movement in Kenya Offers Lessons for Us All  

Flowers for Elephants tells the story of a community conservation movement in Kenya, that shows how environmental change does not have to divide us, but can bring us together.  What began as a last-ditch effort to save rhinos from extinction sparked a remarkable return of wildlife to a once-struggling cattle ranch called Lewa, now named a UN World Heritage Site for its outstanding value to humanity. This served as a catalyst for much broader action. Communities created a network of protected lands across an area larger than Switzerland. 

The book, by OM Pete Martell (LI 1992-97) is based on over a decade of reporting from East Africa for the BBC and the French news agency AFP, was released in March and has a foreword by HRH The Duke of Cambridge (who called it “exciting, important and inspiring”) as well as endorsements by Dr Jane Goodall (“Read it and buy copies for everyone who cares about the natural world”).  It is illustrated with photographs from two award-winning National Geographic photographers, David Chancellor and Pete McBride.  

In May 2022, Pete also delivered a Marlburian Monday and spoke about a community conservation movement in northern Kenya which through its work has helped to build peace and drive social, environmental and political change in the area. Peter, who spent over 15 years in East Africa for the BBC and the French news agency AFP, told the story of a conservation movement creating change at scale to entire ecosystems. This fascinating story includes tales from tracking elephants through the bush to gun battles with bandits and treks through Al-Qaeda territory.

Flowers for Elephants is available from all good bookshops, as well as directly from Hurst Publishers – and OMs can get 25% off using the code ELEPHANTS25, with free UK postage for two copies.