Tim Sebastian was a Druid himself, founder of the Secular Order of Druids. In fact he was a gay Druid, and it wasn't an accident that his Order's initials spelt SODs. I am not aware of any notable writings that he produced from his own pen, but he was loved and respected by many. He bore a passing resemblance to Ian Botham, especially when dressed in whites, and his Druidic interest in Stonehenge extended to the 18th century practice of holding a summer solstice cricket match at the Stones. He died in 2007.
This annual award is a Bardic one, given for 'the elevation of the word'. It is intended to recognise the recipient's work within the community, and was instituted as a way of honouring people who would not be likely to compete for the Chair; I imagine that the judges particularly had in mind my books Free State and The River.
The award manifests as a large cup, or Quaich, which requires single malt whiskey for it to be used properly in ritual circumstances. This one would take half a bottle-full, and would go round a very large circle. I don't do alcohol myself these days, but I would recommend the old Gaelic practice to those who do. I feel very pleased to be this year's recipient, and I shall install it in my office so that anyone with an interest in the object, or in my books, can come and have a look.