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The Prince of Wales receives ‘Londoner of the Decade’ award at The Evening Standard's Progress 1000 Awards

7th September 2016

The Prince of Wales was tonight awarded 'Londoner of the Decade' at The Evening Standard's Progress 1000 Awards for his work and commitment to young people and the built environment. 

The Prince established his Prince’s Trust in 1976 which, to date, has helped more than 825,000 young people find work, training, and education. In London alone, The Trust has helped some 5,000 young people to defeat unimaginable personal odds by offering them training or helping them start their own businesses or learn new skills. 

Tonight’s Evening Standard Award for 'Londoner of the Decade' is also in recognition for The Prince's work in the built environment and the work carried out by The Prince’s Foundation for Building Community. The Foundation believes that it pays enormous social and environmental dividends to involve local people in the design of the places where they live. 

The Prince’s Foundation has so far involved around 8,000 people in the design of over one hundred projects. It has also trained a generation of architects, master-planners and “placemakers” and worked on a huge array of projects that range in scale from new towns and university campuses to individual buildings like the recently opened Alder Hey Children’s Hospital. Many of these projects have also resulted in the creation of hundreds (if not thousands) of jobs in the process. 

You can watch The Prince's speech at the Progress 1000 Awards here.

A speech by HRH The Prince of Wales at The Evening Standard's Progress 1000 Awards

Published on 7th September 2016

Ladies and gentlemen, I am most touched and, indeed, surprised, that the Evening Standard should have decided to give me the award of Londoner of the Decade.  I have to confess I am not entirely sure whether to be pleased or alarmed.  Perhaps I am losing my touch when such eminent newspapers start giving me achievement awards!  So I set to wondering what this achievement might have been?

As I suppose I have spent most of my life trying to propose and initiate things that very few people could see the point of or, frankly, thought were plain bonkers at the time, perhaps some of them are now beginning to recognize a spot of pioneering in all this apparent madness?  All forms of pioneering have moments that make you hold your breath and cross your fingers.  There is a good chance it could all go horribly wrong and there’s a fine line between the success of a good, original idea and a complete disaster.  If it fails, it fails, but at least you had a go – and I could always say one of my plants told me to do it!  Starting my Duchy Originals food company twenty-five years ago was a case in point.   When we launched the first organic oat biscuit there were tabloid headlines saying “A shop-soiled Royal.”  People now tend to understand the point of, and enjoy, the organic food they once thought of as bonkers twenty-five years ago – and, through Duchy Originals, I have so far given away more than £14 million to charitable causes.

In 1976, I set up The Prince’s Trust amidst social unrest and high levels of youth ...

Read full speech