UK Composting volunteers recognised by the Queen with prestigious award

Bisley Community Composting Scheme is one of 103 UK volunteering groups to win this year’s The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service - the MBE for volunteer groups.

The prestigious National Honour recognises outstanding contributions made to local communities by groups voluntarily devoting their time for the benefit of others.

It sets the national benchmark for excellence in volunteering, with the work of those awarded being judged of the highest standard. Bisley Community Composting Scheme has more than 100 members who take their garden waste to a designated site in the village. Every year around 50 tonnes of this waste is transformed into compost, which is used by local residents.

Lesley Greene from the Bisley Community Composting Scheme management committee said: “We are delighted to receive this award - it is not only recognition for the work of the committee who founded the scheme and ensure its smooth running, but for the scheme’s members who have literally given so much.

“The project saves villagers a round trip of around 20 miles to the nearest county council-run Household Recycling Centre at Horsley. “This results not only in a financial saving for every member, but importantly, reduces their carbon footprint.

“The committee would particularly like to thank Simon Brown from Gloucestershire County Council Waste Management Unit for his ongoing support and for nominating us for this prestigious award.

“We hope other communities will be inspired by what has been achieved here in Bisley to start their own schemes.”

Simon Brown, Community Liaison and PR Officer for the County Council Waste Management Unit said: “This award to Bisley Community Composting scheme is thoroughly deserved.

“Community composting schemes rely heavily on dedicated volunteers.

“All of the volunteers at Bisley have shown great resilience – to ensure the scheme goes from strength to strength. They should take full credit for its success.”

Cllr Stan Waddington, cabinet member for environment and waste said: “This is a fantastic achievement and I would like to congratulate all of the volunteers at Bisley on getting this award.

“Schemes like this, and many others all around the county rely on volunteers to keep them going and it is particularly significant to receive this award today as it is National Volunteers Week.

“The county council will continue to support community composting, as it is a great way of dealing with waste locally, as well as diverting waste away from landfill.”

Winners of this year’s Queen’s Award were selected from 341 groups nominated by members of the public who have been helped personally or witnessed the benefits of a group’s work in their community.

Bisley Community Composting Scheme will receive a certificate signed by the Queen and an exclusive commemorative crystal, presented by Her Majesty's representative in Gloucestershire at a special ceremony.

The group has also received an invitation for representatives to attend a Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace in the summer. For details of all this year’s Award winners and information on how to nominate a group, visit