The MBE for volunteering groups

The National Coastwatch Institution (NCI), Cornwall has been announced as 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.

NCI Cornwall has received the Award for helping to save lives at sea and along the Cornish coastline.

There are over 500 watchkeepers and trainees manning the thirteen stations operated by NCI in Cornwall. The numbers continue to grow as volunteers from all backgrounds appreciate the part they are able to play in helping to ensure the safety of our coastline at no cost to the public.

Winners of this year’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.

NCI Cornwall will receive a certificate signed by the Queen and an exclusive commemorative crystal, presented by Her Majesty’s representative in Cornwall, Lady Mary Holborow J.P. at a special ceremony. 

Jon Gifford, Chairman of NCI said: “With the opening of our first lookout at Bass Point on the Lizard in 1994, NCI was born. Since then, thirteen stations have been established in Cornwall, all supported by highly dedicated communities with whom I am extremely proud to be associated. NCI Cornwall is a centre of excellence and I congratulate our volunteers and supporters who have all played a part in the achievement of this highly prestigious award”.

More than 850 groups around the UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man have now won the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, over the eight years since it was created by Her Majesty to mark the occasion of her Golden Jubilee in 2002.

For details of all this year’s Award winners and information on how to nominate a group, visit