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The Church Times Green Church Awards


The Church Times Green Church Awards have two objectives: to celebrate the remarkable efforts made in recent years by individuals and congregations to offset the damage being done to the earth, and to set good examples before others who might be inspired to follow suit.

The 2024 Church Times Green Church Awards are organised jointly with the Church of England’s environment programme, the Methodist Church, the Salvation Army, and Eco Congregation Scotland. They are open to church groups and church schools of any denomination, in the UK and Ireland.

There are seven award categories:

  • Green Building award, sponsored by Inspired Efficiency: projects that have significantly reduced the carbon footprint of an existing building or strengthened its climate resilience, or a new building built to high environmental standards which can be shown to have been the better option than refurbishment. Prize: £1000.
  • Land and Nature award, sponsored by A Rocha (Eco Church): projects creating space for wildlife and encourage biodiversity. Prize: £1000.
  • Congregation and Community Action, sponsored by Green Journey: projects where a church, school, or other group has taken a leading part in environmental action, benefiting the wider community as well as its own. Prize: £1000.
  • Action on a Shoestring award, sponsored by Green Journey: projects where a church, school, or other group has achieved a great deal with little. Prize: £1000.
  • Green champion award, sponsored by Stewardship: nominations are invited for an individual who has made a significant difference through their environmental efforts. Prize: £1000.
  • Training and Education award, sponsored by BRF Ministries (Messy Church): projects promoting understanding about some aspect of environmental action, or destruction, and its impact, either at home or on the international community. Prize: £1000.
  • Green Health award, sponsored by the Conservation Foundation: Projects making an active connection between faith, nature, and health. Projects may be run by a faith organisation in association with a local health practice or charity. Prize: £1000. The Conservation Foundation is particularly looking to encourage the use of faith land for therapeutic gardening to benefit communities, especially where this involves social prescribing.  

The panel of judges will be looking for projects that have made a positive change in the past two years in buildings, outdoors, and in the community. A building project can be nominated even if it hasn’t been completed, with as much information as possible about known and projected environmental impacts. A group can enter in one or more categories.

The deadline for entries is 30 June 2024. Details of shortlisted entries will be published in the Church Times during the summer. The awards ceremony will take place during Creationtide, in London. Photos and videos to accompany entries are encouraged.

Nominate a project for the 2024 awards here.

Backing the launch of the awards, the Bishop of Norwich and lead bishop for the environment, the Rt Revd Graham Usher, said: “The Green Church Awards will help to celebrate and encourage others to notice the wide variety of great work that is being undertaken by church communities around the country to care for creation.

“As I read the Gospels, I’m struck by just how much nature is noticed by Jesus. We can join with him in seeing our lilies of the field, the trees in fruit, and the birds of the air. He also told stories to help us understand important truths.

“We, too, have stories to tell to inspire others to take action for climate change and nature recovery. Why not put forward your church eco initiative so we can celebrate our care for God’s creation?”

The global advocacy and influencing director at Tearfund, Dr Ruth Valerio, said: “The Green Church Awards are a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the range of environmental achievements made by church communities. It’s also a timely reminder ahead of COP28 in the United Arab Emirates that there is no more time for silence, and that the Church can and should be doing more to fight the climate crisis.

“In the 30 years I’ve been working with the Church on the issue of environment care, I’ve been encouraged to see more and more Christians respond to the climate crisis, both in making changes in their own lives and in speaking out. But there is so much more we need to do.

“At Tearfund, we work in 50 of the world’s poorest countries where people who have done the least to cause this crisis are suffering the most. Our world leaders need to take urgent action to reduce carbon emissions and stop the crisis from getting worse. And, as the Church, we have a huge part to play in speaking out to governments, politicians, and businesses, to call on them to put policies and practices in place that don’t harm creation and people living in poverty.”

2024 Green Church Awards sponsors

We are pleased to announce the involvement of partner organisations and sponsors in the 2024 Green Church Awards, chief among whom is Ecclesiastical Insurance.
Helen Richards, church operations director at Ecclesiastical Insurance, said: “As a company dedicated to making a positive environmental impact, I’m delighted that Ecclesiastical is able to sponsor the Green Church Awards 2024. We’ve been protecting churches for more than 135 years, and we know that action is needed to help preserve these amazing buildings from climate change for generations to come.

“There are amazing projects and initiatives taking place in churches in communities all around the country helping to tackle climate change, and these awards are a fantastic opportunity to celebrate them. We’d encourage churches to submit their entries and share the work they are doing for a chance to receive £1000 to support their work.”

Our other partners include:

  • Inspired Efficiency, Buildings award sponsor

    “Inspired Efficiency have been delivering decarbonisation projects and advice to churches on how to reach net zero in their buildings for 13 years. We are passionate about taking climate change and know that heritage buildings are not ‘too difficult’ to achieve this but can be a leading example of how to decarbonise well within the hub a community. We are proud to be supporting the Church Times Green Church Awards and look forward to learning more from the entrants and their inspiring efforts”
    Matt Fulford, Inspired Efficiency

  • A Rocha UK (Eco Church), Land and Nature award sponsor

    “Church land has enormous potential for serving God by helping restore nature, cut carbon and ministering to the local community, so we are delighted to support these awards to inspire and encourage churches to fully include their land as part of their mission”
    Andy Atkins, CEO, A Rocha UK

  • Green Journey, Congregation and community action award sponsor; Action on a Shoestring award sponsor
    “Green Journey is proud to sponsor the Congregation and Community Action and Action on a Shoestring categories at the Church Times Awards. Our mission to guide churches towards sustainability perfectly aligns with these awards, showcasing innovative and efficient environmental practices within church communities. Celebrating congregations that effectively combine resource conservation with impactful community engagement, we’re inspired to further support the journey towards a sustainable future for all.”
    Craig Hogg, head of Green Journey

  • Stewardship, Green Champion award sponsor
    “Stewardship is delighted to be sponsoring the Green Church award. As part of our commitment to reducing our carbon footprint, we have achieved Planet Mark accreditation. We are keen too to encourage our many church and charity partners to consider how they can consider their impact on the planet. We also support those causes working specifically for the environment by signposting our donors to a special platform of dedicated content and resources that we call ‘Creation Care’. We recognise there are many passionately committed individuals who are making a significant contribution to caring for our planet, so we very much look forward to honouring those nominated for this award and showcasing the winner.”
    Janie Oliver, CEO, Stewardship

  • BRF Ministries (Messy Church), Education and Training award sponsor
    “Messy Church has been a trailblazer in mission and we are passionate that Christian faith is lived out with respect to care for creation.
    “Education and training are the heart of understanding the problems of climate emergency. Messy Church Goes Wild, our initiative to help church address our environmental responsibilities, offers people of all ages the chance to take their part in changing behaviours and attitudes, providing the opportunity to encounter God through nature. As it is Messy Church, we believe education and training should be fun and tactile, while exploring the wonders of God’s world and the important role we play in it.

    “These awards raise awareness of the urgency of climate change but give churches an opportunity to respond positively to the challenges. The more we can share our experiences and care for God’s world around us, the greater the impact.”
    Aike Kennett-Brown, Messy Church Lead for BRF Ministries

  • The Conservation Foundation, Green Health award sponsor
    “We are delighted that the Green health awards are continuing to encourage churches and faith organisations to use their space to bring the benefits of nature to help mind, body and spirit. ‘Faith space’ is often the only green lung in a community, and it can help to improve lives in many ways. I very much hope that we can encourage both existing and new projects through these awards.”
    David Shreeve, director, The Conservation Foundation



2017 winners

Green Building Award

St Wenn, Bodmin, Cornwall. A small, rural church that partnered with the next door school to install and share a biomass heating system. Most of work was done by volunteers. Bishop Nicholas said: “It is a beautiful example of the pastoral mission of the parish church being care for the community and the members of the community caring for and becoming the parish church.”


Biodiversity award

St James’s, Finchampstead, Berks. Volunteers converted scrubland into a biodiverse churchyard extension and garden of remembrance. The land was transformed into a wildlife haven, including bat boxes, bee hotels and wild flowers. The judges praised the wide range of small measures and community engagement.


Green Congregation award

St John’s, Shildon, Durham, the Shildon Alive! Guerilla Gardening Team. The congregation started this project in 2014, counteracting decline in community engagement and increase in vandalism. Over 1000 young people have been involved in planting in 70 locations. The scheme also has two community gardens, a food waste scheme and gave out 300 bags of fresh fruit in 2016.


Green Champion Award (shared equally by all those shortlisted)

Martyn Goss (diocese of Exeter); Br Hugh Cobbett SSF (Hilfield Friary); Victoria Gilbert (St Catherine’s, Burbage); Suzanne Dalton (St Chad’s, Far Headingley); Judith Allinson (St John’s Methodist Church, Settle).


Green Futures award

Holy Trinity, Tulse Hill, London, described as an innovative church hall building using only recycled material which engaged with the entire community. The project is using straw bales and will be the first straw-bale church building in Europe and the largest straw-bale building in London.

2017 shortlist

Green Building award               Sponsored by Good Energy
Gloucester Cathedral; Holy Trinity, Bradford on Avon; Holy Trinity, Tulse Hill; St Wenn’s, Bodmin. 
Read more: Green Building award

Green Congregation award              Sponsored by Ecclesiastical Insurance
Garden design and development team (Campoverde Church, Spain); Inverkip Church Eco-group; St Catherine’s Environment Group (St Catherine’s, Burbage); Shildon Alive! Guerrilla Gardening Team (St John’s, Shildon) 
Read more: Green Congregations

Biodiversity award               Sponsored by Levy Restaurants UK
Bradford Cathedral; OASIS Community Church, Worksop; St Asaph’s, Denbighshire; St James’s, Finchampstead; St John’s, Sharow.  
Read more: Biodiversity award

Green Champion award               Sponsored by Shrinking the Footprint
Martyn Goss (diocese of Exeter); Br Hugh Cobbett SSF (Hilfield Friary); Victoria Gilbert (St Catherine’s, Burbage); Suzanne Dalton (St Chad’s, Far Headingley); Judith Allinson (St John’s Methodist Church, Settle).  
Read more: Green Champions

Green Futures award              Sponsored by Shrinking the Footprint
Baildon Methodist Church; Hamutua Quarterly Meeting Friends Church, Kenya; Sheddingdean Baptist Church; St Mary the Virgin, Cannington.



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