Last night, the People Tree team headed to the Observer Ethical Awards at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. The awards are a celebration of the environment and social justice. The already buzzing atmosphere was made that bit extra special as it was the ten year anniversary of the award ceremony.

After a drinks reception, filled with the faces of 21st century change makers, in the V&A’s main foyer, the event was kicked off by John Mulholland, the Editor of The Observer. John highlighted the many questions that the evening’s host, Lucy Siegle, has had to tackle over the many years in her column on ethical living. The audience laughed as John recounted the question “is it ok to have a second home if I use solar panels?”


The dress code was ‘sustainable style’. Safia Minney, People Tree’s founder and CEO, wore the Zandra Rhodes with People Tree Cars Flared Dress from the new collaboration. Zandra Rhodes wore the Zandra Rhodes Dancing Stars Bodycon Dress. Alice Levine wore the Orla Kiely Birdwatch Gathered Dress In Green. People Tree’s James Minney, Chief Finance Officer and Chief Operating Officer, wore the Gabriel Chambray Shirt. Mia Hadrill, Public Relations Officer, opted for the Jemima Jumpsuit and Mkwama Ndeti, Ecommerce Executive, wore the Abigail dress.

The real winner, however, of Sustainable Style was Nudie Jeans. Åhrman’s company message is simple: “Buy high-quality product. Look after it and repair it. When you’re sick of it, share it though our repair shop or by giving it to a friend. Keep clothes alive so we can reduce consumption.”


The venue of the V&A meant that the audience were surrounded by stunning historic and iconic pieces of art. It was the appropriate venue to see the lifetime achievement award go to Yoko Ono for her artistic style of activism over the last century. As Yoko was in New York, London- based post-punk group, Savages, picked up the award on her behalf.

The campaigner of the year was announced by legendary Camila Batmanghelidjh, Kids Company. Picked up by Livia firth, Eco Age, it went to People Tre’s ex-designer Emma Watson for her impressive speech at the United Nations Head Quarters. There, Emma presented the #HeForShe campaign, a solidarity movement for gender equality that brings together one half of humanity in support of the other half of humanity, for the benefit of all.

Jo Wood, the goddess of organic living, sneak previewed a gorgeous organic cotton piece from our Spring/Summer 2016 to announce the new category of Ethical Wildlife. As the decision was so tough, this award was jointly appointed to World Animal Protection UK and The Friends of the Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park.

Throughout the awards special messages were sent to the nominees by an eclectic mix of talent. This ranged from Deborah Meaden, the Dragon’s den entrepreneur, to Grace Woodward, fashion commentator and presenter and of EKOCYCLE, which inspire new things made in part from recycled materials.

The Observer Ethical Awards was a great reminder of the many people who are making the world a better place, reminding us “I am only one, but I am one. I can’t do everything, but I can do something. The something I ought to do, I can do.”


The list of winners went on. Award Katie Piper, philanthropist and television presenter was blown away by winners of Young Green Champions Award, Andover Trees United, for their work in planting trees. Coronation Street won the Film and Television Award for all their work with sustainability. People Tree was delighted to see our dear friends Riverford Organics’ organic veg box, or “orgasmic veg box” as our CEO calls it, win ethical product of the decade.


David Lindo, The Urban Birder – broadcaster, writer, speaker and tour leader announced the winner of the Arts and Cultural Award, Festival of Thrift, a fantastic festival at Lingfield Point that celebrates thrift and frugal living. The festival is made up of fine food, debates and films, artists and performers. It looks like a hugely entertaining day of culture so we’ll be booking our tickets to Darlington 26th and 27th September this year.