The History of the Green Britain Foundation
The Green Britain Foundation was set up in August 2012 by Dale Vince, Founder of Ecotricity, to realise his vision for a greener Britain.
Our Charitable Objectives
Our vision of Green Britain is simply one where we all live far more sustainably. The three big issues we need to tackle to achieve that are Energy Transport and Food – these are therefore the three main themes of the work of the Green Britain Foundation. We support and undertake initiatives to promote sustainability in each of these areas.
We also aim to address another aspect of Greening Britain – in a more literal sense.
For too long we (Briton’s) have been squeezing wildlife out through intensive farming and widespread pesticide use – the resultant decline in bird and bee populations is staggering, and in urgent need of redress.
And so the other big focus of the Green Britain Foundation is the creation of new wildlife habitats, the buying of farmland and the giving of it back to nature – making room for the birds, bees and other creatures – that are essential to Britain being truly green.
Energy, Transport, Food - and room for Nature. These are the issues that urgently need addressing - and the solutions to them will form our blueprint for a Green Britain.
Who We Are
The charity is run by three Trustees:
Dale Vince OBE, Founder
Dale Vince has been concerned about sustainability issues since he was a boy. After leaving school to pursue an alternative, low impact way of life, he eventually spent a decade living off the grid, generating his own power through a self-made windmill.
It was this sustainable lifestyle that inspired Dale to launch Ecotricity, the first green electricity company in the world, in 1996, marking the beginning of the now global green electricity market.
Dale’s mission was and remains to change the way electricity is made and used in Britain, but this mission has expanded to include the three causes of 80% of all personal carbon footprints – Energy, Transport and Food.
As well as building wind and solar parks, Dale is established as a leading player in promoting electric vehicles in the UK: he installed the world’s first national network of charging points in 2011 and also developed the Nemesis electric super car, which smashed the UK land speed record in 2012.
Dale is also active in wanting to do as much as possible to inspire and help people be more sustainable, and protect our environment – which is why he founded the Green Britain Foundation.
Tom Cowling, Company Secretary
Tom is a solicitor and general counsel with Dale Vince’s Ecotricity Group Limited and group companies. Tom is a trustee of Dale’s two charities: the Green Britain Foundation and Sustainability in Sport.
He is responsible for all of Ecotricity’s legal affairs. These cover a multitude of areas including charity law, corporate, commercial, energy & trading, renewables, employment, intellectual property, dispute resolution, marketing and consumer law. Ultimately, Tom and his team act as both sword and shield for the group.
Prior to being a lawyer Tom was a ski and surf bum. Prior to that he was an investment banker. He once climbed Mont Blanc - an endeavour he has no intention whatsoever of repeating.
Helen Taylor, Trustee
Helen has been involved in sustainable food production since 1999, which is when she joined the Soil Association to look after the certification, and later promotion of, organic food and other products. In the latter part of her eleven years with the organisation she headed up the charity's fundraising department. Prior to this she worked for the food industry for fourteen years.
Helen likes to make things happen! In 2010 she joined Dale Vince as Ecotricity's Ambassador and helped set up the Green Britain Foundation. She focuses the majority of her time on building greater awareness and opportunities for businesses, and other like-minded organisations, to realise the positive environmental impact they - and others - can have simply by re- considering the Energy they use, the Transport they use and the Food they choose.
Helen also works with a number of nature conservation/environmental charities and runs events and activities aimed at helping promote their work and shared vision for a `Green Britain'.
Away from work, Helen donates one day a week towards good causes, relating to sustainability.
What we do...
Our work and funds support the running of the Green Britain Centre, our registered Visitor and Education Centre, based in Swaffham, Norfolk and our Green Britain Education Programme delivered at the Centre and further afield.
In January 2014 we donated the Green Britain Centre to the Foundation.
The Green Britain Centre is the manifestation of our Green Britain vision - a place where the latest technology and thinking is woven into a vision of a more sustainable way to live, a life in the near future - a blueprint. It's mission is to inform, educate and empower people - to take the small and the big steps towards living in Green Britain. Our Green Britain Education Programme delivered at the Centre and at Forest Green Rovers Football Club in Gloucestershire, also supports this mission.
The Green Britain Centre is part of the Green Britain Foundation which is a registered charity 1148783, and a company limited by guarantee 8121843 (England & Wales).