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Environmental charity Westcountry Rivers Trust scoops top prize at Cornwall Sustainability Awards

A charity which protects and restores rivers across the region has been crowned overall winner at the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Sustainability Awards (CSA).

Westcountry Rivers Trust also won the environmental growth category in the awards ceremony held at the Royal Cornwall Museum on Friday. 

Cornwall Sustainability Awards 2023 overall winner Westcountry Rivers Trust

The trust was praised for its work in bringing rivers to life for almost 30 years and its vision to see the region’s freshwater environments flowing freely and teeming with life for all who depend on them.

It was singled out for using science, evidence and experience to underpin its restoration work as well as its commitment to the resilience of freshwater resources.

Now in its 21st year, the Cornwall Sustainability Awards hosted by Cornwall Council celebrates organisations and individuals across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly for their contribution towards sustainability, environmental growth, the circular economy and carbon neutrality. 

For the first time this year there was a new, growing greener award for tree-planting which went to The Grower, a family-run nursery based in St Agnes specialising in growing and supplying wholesale trees and hedging.

Other winners were green tech company Cleaner Seas Groups for the circular economy category and Treveth Holdings for the carbon neutral section.

The most sustainable organisation prizes went to independent internet provider Wildanet in the large organisations category; cheesemakers Lynher Dairies for medium-sized organisations; and sustainable holiday accommodation company Railholiday for the small section.  

A perpetual award was set up in memory of the former Chair of Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership Mark Duddridge who died earlier this year.

The winner of this category which rewards those with a sustainable vision went to Cornish independent film production company Bosena.

Cllr Martyn Alvey, Cornwall Council cabinet member for environment and climate change and one of the competition judges, said: 

“The Cornwall Sustainability Awards highlights the breadth of innovative organisations we have here in our region and how dedicated they are to helping nature thrive, lowering our impact on the planet and boosting our green economy and skills.

“We want to thank all our amazing entrants and winners and everyone who attended our awards evening for making this such a special event.”

Laurence Couldrick, CEO of Westcountry Rivers Trust, said:

“This is testament to the hard work our team puts into our Cornwall-based projects caring for freshwater habitats, and our collaboration with partners and volunteers to tackle the myriad of issues facing our rivers.

“As we enter our 30th year in 2024, I am proud of what our charity continues to do to help sustain rivers, and I am delighted the Cornwall & Isles of Scilly Sustainability Awards have bestowed these accolades.”

The full results are: 

Growing Greener - planting trees in Cornwall (sponsored by Forest for Cornwall, Forestry Commission and the Woodland Trust):  

  • Winner – The Grower
  • Runner-up - Arbor Farm
  • Highly commended - Bolghen Tree Nursery CIC
  • Special commendation - Gaia Trust CIO

Circular Economy (sponsored by Arca, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership and Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Hub): 

  • Winner - Cleaner Seas Group
  • Runner-up - Gleaning Cornwall
  • Highly commended - Growing Point, Eden Project

Environmental Growth (sponsored by Cornwall Association of Tourist Attractions, Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Trust and Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Hub): 

  • Winner - Westcountry Rivers Trust
  • Runner-up - Sailors Creek CIC
  • Highly commended – Our Only World

Carbon Neutral (sponsored by the Truro & Penwith College, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership and Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Growth Hub): 

  • Winner - Treveth Holdings
  • Runner-up - Planet A Solutions and Verto Homes
  • Highly Commended - Cornwall and SW Health & Climate Resilience Network

Most Sustainable Organisation – small:

  • Winner - Railholiday

Most Sustainable Organisation – medium:

  • Winner - Lynher Dairies

Most Sustainable Organisation – large:

  • Winner - Wildanet

Overall Winner (sponsored by Business Cornwall):

  • Westcountry Rivers Trust

This year’s judges were Kim Conchie, Chief Executive of Cornwall Chamber of Commerce, Lord Robin Teverson, Chair of Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Nature Partnership, Cllr Martyn Alvey, Clare Parnell of Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, Gitty Ankers MBE of Cornwall Community Flood Forum ad Matt Hocking, owner of Leap, Design for Change. 

The Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Cornwall Sir Ferrers Vyvyan Bt DL opened the event. 


Story posted December 11, 2023

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