FOREST Green Rovers have beaten Manchester City and Lords Cricket Ground to a sustainability in sport award.

The Nailsworth-based club was awarded the first ever ‘Green Heart Hero’ Sustainability in Sport Award, by the Climate Coalition at a ceremony in Parliament.

Chief executive Helen Taylor picked up the award at the ceremony in London last night, which recognises the club’s approach to put the environment and sustainability at the club’s core.

The awards, which range from accolades for green schools or businesses to sustainable sports projects, were presented by high-profile figures such as broadcaster Clive Anderson and historian Bettany.

Dale Vince, chairman of Forest Green Rovers was delighted with the accolade.

“Sustainability and sport are two words that aren’t often seen together, but at FGR we’re bridging that gap and are demonstrating that there is another way,” said Mr Vince

“We’re really delighted to have our work recognised by the Climate Coalition – it’s another big achievement for the club in what is proving to be a momentous year for us, as we’ve been promoted to the Football League, named by FIFA as the world’s greenest football club and spoken at the UN.”

Since taking over the club in 2010, Dale Vince has introduced a host of environmental initiatives.

These include launching a fully vegan menu, installing solar panels, creating an organic pitch and using solar powered robot lawnmower.

The Green Heart Hero Awards are the brainchild of The Climate Coalition, a group of more than 130 organisations representing over 15 million people ranging from the RSPB, WWF, Women’s Institute and the Woodland Trust, to aid agencies such as CAFOD, Tearfund and Christian Aid.