Skip to Content


Queen’s honours Eden Project co-founder Sir Tim Smit for his contribution to Environment Conservatio

Sir Tim Smit, will today be awarded a Doctor of Science in recognition of his services to environment conservation.

Sir Timothy is a Dutch-born British businessman who jointly helped create the Lost Gardens of Heligan, and the Eden Project in Cornwall and is a world leader in the area of environmental conservation and preservation.

After graduating from Durham University with a degree in Archaeology and Anthropology, he took an unexpected path and enjoyed a successful 10 year career in the music industry.

Upon moving to Cornwall in 1987, he worked with John Nelson to realise his dream to restore the Lost Gardens of Heligan, not only revitalising the gardens but also the local economy around the area.

Since opening its doors to the public in 2000, the Eden Project has welcomed more than 19 million people to visit the reclaimed clay pit which is now home to an abundance of plants and wildlife.

In 2001, he published a book about the creation of the Eden Project, which remains the best-selling environment book of the century.

In 2002 he was awarded an Honorary CBE in the New Years Honours List and ten years later was appointed Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (KBE) by Her Majesty the Queen.

Speaking ahead of his graduation ceremony, he said: “It’s an honour to receive this award from Queen’s University today, a University which is committed to sustainability.

“As the number one in the UK for Agriculture, Food & Veterinary Sciences, I’m delighted to be graduating alongside students from the Institute for Global Food Security and the School of Biological Sciences. I am confident that many of you will go on to do great things in such an important field for our future generations.”

Sir Tim is Executive Vice-Chair, and Co-founder of the award-winning Eden Project.


For media inquiries, please contact