A Cornish outdoor clothing brand that puts sustainable practices at the heart of its business has been crowned the overall winner of the 20th Cornwall Sustainability Awards.
St Agnes-based Finisterre won the Overall Winner and Circular Economy categories in the awards ceremony held at Truro Cathedral last week.
Now in its 20th year, the competition hosted by Cornwall Council and business support enterprise Tevi celebrates organisations and individuals in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly for their contribution towards sustainability, environmental growth, the circular economy and carbon neutrality.
Other winners were Hillside Farm based in Bryher for sustainable food and farming; restoration retreat Cabilla on Bodmin Moor for environmental growth; WREN, or Wadebridge Renewable Energy Network, for the carbon neutral section; and St Eval Candle Company for the most sustainable organisation category.
Leading sustainable clothing brand Finisterre was recognised for its circular business model and the range of sustainable services it offers to customers including inhouse repairs, taking back items and reselling them as well as recycling.
It was one of the first businesses in Cornwall to be awarded the prestigious B Corp certification to recognise its work prioritising the environment and society above profit as well as its accountability and transparency.
Tom Kay, director of Finisterre, said: “Finisterre was founded in 2003 here in St. Agnes on a deep belief that there was a better way of making product and being as a business, so to be recognised by the Cornish community with this sustainable award is a huge honour and something we are all very proud of.”
The Lord Lieutenant Col Edward Bolitho opened the event which featured record-breaking yachtswoman Nikki Henderson and explorer Robin Hanbury-Tenison as the keynote speakers.
In 2018 Nikki became the youngest ever skipper to lead a team in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race at the age of 25. The following year she skippered La Vagabonde, the yacht used by environmental activist Greta Thunberg to travel sustainably across the Atlantic from California to the United Nations COP climate summit in Madrid.
Cllr Martyn Alvey, Cornwall Council cabinet member for environment and climate change and one of the competition judges, said: “For the past 20 years the Cornwall Sustainability Awards has encouraged, recognised, and rewarded all the fantastic organisations who have been leading the way in making Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly a more sustainable place to live.
“Over that time, the judges have read through thousands of applications, recognised hundreds of winners and sowed the seeds for countless conversations, collaborations and partnerships across the business community and beyond.
“This year saw a record number of entrants from the Isles of Scilly and we’re delighted that two of them won awards, Hillside Farm and St Martin’s Vineyard, which are both fantastic examples of embedding sustainability into an organisation.”
The full results are:
Growing Greener – sustainable food and farming category (sponsored by the Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the University of Exeter):
- Winner – Hillside Farm, Isles of Scilly
- Runner-up – The Real Food Garden
- Highly Commended – St Martin’s Vineyard, Isles of Scilly
Circular Economy category (sponsored by Arca and the University of Exeter):
- Winner – Finisterre
- Runner up – TEX Innovation Project by Cultivate Communities
- Highly Commended – Sea Moor Cornwall Ltd
- Judge’s Commendation – Flotsam Flo
Environmental Growth category (sponsored by Cornwall & the Isles of Scilly Growth Hub, South West Water and the University of Exeter):
- Winner – Cabilla
- Runner up – Your Shore project by CWT
- Highly Commended – The Far Out Thinking Company
Carbon Neutral category (sponsored by the Cornish Association of Tourist Attractions (CATA), South West Water and Foot Anstey):
- Winner – Net Zero Community Project by WREN
- Runner up – Cornwall Climate Care
- Highly Commended – Higher Pendeen Camping
Most Sustainable Organisation category (sponsored by St Austell Printing Company and the University of Exeter):
- Winner – St Eval Candle Company
- Runner up – Carley’s Organic
- Highly Commended – Old Chapel Cellars
Recycling social enterprise Waterhaul designed and created the award trophies using re-purposed PPE from the Royal Cornwall Hospital at Treliske.
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, Mark Duddridge, Chair of Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Local Enterprise Partnership, Cllr Martyn Alvey, Cornwall Council portfolio holder for environment and climate change, Ann VanDerMeulen, development manager of Federation of Small Businesses Cornwall, Matt Hocking, owner of Leap, and Tanya Saker, head of environment at the Council of Isles of Scilly.
Visit the Cornwall Sustainability Awards website for more information.
Story posted December 13, 2022