Applications now open to the William Sutton Prize, with 2 prizes of £20,000 available for organisations with an innovative idea to improve society (deadline 30 September 2020)

The William Sutton Prize is open to individuals aged over 18 and organisations in the UK presenting an innovative concept, product or service that will have a positive social impact on a community. This can include projects or ideas developed during the coronavirus outbreak with potential for long-term impact, with the Prize’s criteria updated to reflect this.

No idea is too big, or too small.  Individuals with a fresh concept can enter, as can established organisations with a new business plan.

The deadline for applications is 12 noon on Wednesday 30 September 2020.

There are two categories, each with a prize fund of £20,000:

  1. The William Sutton Prize for Social Innovation will be awarded to an individual or organisation that has developed a product, concept or service that will make a positive social impact on disadvantaged groups or communities. This could include those keen to build on a service or project that was trialled successfully during the coronavirus outbreak. 
  2. The William Sutton Prize for Placemaking and Affordable Housing Design will be awarded to an individual or organisation that has developed a design concept that will improve the quality of life and support the wellbeing of residents and communities. The criteria has been updated to recognise new thinking around community spaces, the renewed sense of community spirit and the role and impact of community spaces post-lockdown.

Funding is provided by Clarion Futures, the charitable foundation of Clarion Housing Group. The winning entries will be determined by a panel of industry experts led by Clare Miller, Group Chief Executive of Clarion, and including Peter Holbrook CBE, CEO of Social Enterprise UK.

In 2019, Fat Macy’s received The William Sutton Prize for Social Innovation for its proposal to expand its supper clubs and catering events which help get young Londoners off the streets and into their own homes whilst providing work experience.

Meg Doherty, Founder of Fat Macy’s, said:

Winning The William Sutton Prize was an amazing experience and created such a boost for our team. It’s the first award we’ve won and since then things have changed so much.

“We’ve hired a new staff member who’s already making fantastic changes to our ways of working and helping us support even more young people. Whilst we haven’t yet been able to open our restaurant and micro hostel due to the pandemic, we have a lot of exciting plans in the pipeline which is all thanks to the support we’ve received from Clarion. I’d really encourage anyone with an idea, no matter how big or small, to apply.

William Sutton (1833-1900) was a 19th century entrepreneur who founded the UK’s first door to door parcel delivery service and bequeathed his fortune to provide much needed housing for the poor

Further information about the William Sutton Prize and how to apply is available on the Clarion Housing Group website.