Williams scoops top PR award

Williams has claimed a top award in the annual PR Week Awards at the Grosvenor House hotel in London.

The event is recognised as the 'oscars' of the PR industry and Williams has walked off with the PR Week Award for Corporate Communications, beating companies such as McDonalds and Santander.

The award recognised the innovative work undertaken by Williams F1 in its responsibility activities. Run under the identity of Williams Spark the campaign is focused on three areas related to the company's core activities of engineering and racing: energy efficiency, education and road safety.

In an eco-friendly age, Williams has taken its biggest liabilities - burning fuel and driving fast - and turned them into positives. It set out to be the first sports and entertainment entity to audit its carbon footprint under the statutes of the Carbon Disclosure Project.

Williams has also taken green technology developed for F1 and adapted it for use in the civil and industrial sectors, signing contracts for green technology with Porsche, Land Rover and the Ministry of Defence.

In the sphere of education, Williams launched a digital learning resource for 9-11 year olds called Race to Learn with Cambridge University Press.

The company has also offered its image and identity to road safety bodies, especially those in developing countries, as well as working with DEKRA in Germany and the Dutch Ministry of Transport and has established a Williams Foundation in Angola.

Assessing the work done by Williams for the Spark programme, judging panellist Bobby Jones labelled it "a first-class campaign. It addressed a very difficult issue with courage, imagination and inventiveness."

Receiving the award, Williams F1's communications head, Liam Clogger, said: "Williams F1 has been bold in addressing responsibility issues and the commendation of our work in such good company is great recognition."

Slightly ironic in all this is that the personable and effective Clogger does not seem to have survived the baton-passing of the Williams chairmanship from Frank Williams to Adam Parr (aka, variously, 'Below' and Andy Garcia in areas of the F1 paddock). Clogger is scheduled to depart the team at the end of the year but we trust he won't be looking for long...

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