Philippe Sands won the £30,000 (about $37,360) Baillie Gifford Prize for Nonfiction for East West Street. The Bookseller reported that upon accepting the honor, Sands "told the audience that he and Hisham Matar, also shortlisted for the prize, had decided in advance that if either were to win, they would share the winnings and donate it to an appropriate refugee charity." Since the ceremony, Sarah Whitley, chair of the Baillie Gifford sponsorship committee, has pledged on behalf of Baillie Gifford an additional £30,000 to charities supporting refugees to "strengthen the effect of his donation."
"In these trying times we feel that we could all come together to make a real difference," Sands said. "From conversations this evening I understand that some of the Baillie Gifford partners would like to match this from their own personal funds, and that (chair of the judges) Stephanie Flanders will also be donating her honorarium for chairing the prize. My thanks to them all."
Flanders said: "Any one of the shortlisted books would have been a worthy winner. But in the end we all agreed that Philippe Sands had pulled off something extraordinary with this book that deserved to reach as wide an audience as possible. This is not just one story but several different stories, woven together - each important and each deeply personal to the author. The result is a multi-layered history that is impressive in its own right but also a satisfying, suspenseful read. A stunning achievement. "