BT, Barclays and IntoUniversity among organisations shortlisted for London’s top responsible business awards

A multinational telecommunications company, a leading global bank, and a national education charity are just some of the organisations shortlisted for this year’s Lord Mayor’s Dragon Awards – the capital’s top responsible business awards.

The City of London Corporation, which runs the Awards, has announced that 20 firms, making a positive difference to society through their responsible business programmes, have made the cut.

Firms of all sizes and sectors made the list, including:

Legal firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges (London) LLP, which has been chosen for its innovative partnership with Micro Rainbow. It helped Micro Rainbow to open the UK’s first ever safe-house for LGBT+ refugees and asylum seekers through volunteer work, financial support and pro bono legal advice. Since 2017, the partnership has supported 37 homeless LGBT+ asylum seekers into safe housing.

Barclays bank has been shortlisted for its digital skills programme Barclays Digital Eagles. Their “Digital Eagles” provide free training in coding to thousands of children, students and trainee teachers across the UK. The initiative helps young people gain confidence and skills, helping close the digital divide through education around digital tools and technology.

Financial technology firm Refinitiv has been chosen for its initiative TicketAid, which is helping to redefine corporate philanthropy by reducing waste through transforming unused business event tickets into donations. TicketAid is a corporate ticket allocation website designed to give employees access to exclusive tickets that would otherwise go to waste whilst raising funds for some fantastic charities. Since 2018, more than 4,000 workers have raised over £80,000 for charity.

The Lord Mayor’s Dragon Awards also recognises the work of SME’s. This year SME’s Gate One, K&M McLoughlin Decorating Ltd, Formation Architects and N- Able, have all been shortlisted for an award.

Over the last 32 years, businesses which have applied to the Awards have helped over 10 million people, mobilising 200,000 business volunteers and giving nearly £250 million in donations and in-kind support to London’s communities.

Applicants for this year’s Awards have supported 2,511,004 people across the UK, and provided over £31,900,000 in support their local communities, charities and


They mobilised 54,170 business volunteers who contributed over 194,131 hours to community groups, schools and individuals across the UK.

Previous Award winners have reported winning new contracts, improved internal relationships, stronger reputations and increased PR as a result of being recognised with an award.

All applicants will be invited to The Mansion House in September where the winners will receive a prestigious ‘Dragon’ from Peter Estlin, the Lord Mayor of the City of London.

Lord Mayor Peter Estlin, said:

“It’s fantastic to see so many firms putting such tremendous effort into their responsible business programmes and going the extra mile to make a difference to society.

“We have seen such a diverse range of initiatives, from employability and skills projects to tech-driven corporate philanthropy.

“Congratulations to all the firms that have made the shortlist. It’s important we continue to shine a light on such effective and successful responsible business work, not only to celebrate these achievements but to encourage other firms to follow suit.”

Rob Powell, Head of Pro Bono & Corporate Responsibility, Weil, Gotshal & Manges (London) LLP, said:

“We’re delighted to be shortlisted for the Lord Mayor’s Dragon Awards for the second year running. Our work with Micro Rainbow, in launching the UK’s first safe-house for LGBTI refugees and asylum seekers, has been a superb and hugely rewarding experience for our lawyers. The Awards are simply the most fantastic celebration of responsible business and we look forward to being part of it.”

Liz Williams, Director of Digital Society at BT said:

“We are delighted to have been shortlisted for the Lord Mayor’s Award for Leadership in Digital Skills, which recognises the huge commitment we have made to driving the UK’s digital skills agenda through the Barefoot programme. BT has funded and managed Barefoot in partnership with BCS since April 2015, engaging both teachers and volunteers to get free, world-class computing teaching resources into UK primary schools.

“Digital skills are critical today, and in future, all jobs will involve technology; which is why the Barefoot programme not only delivers tech skills – it delivers life skills. We live in a world powered by technology and, working with our partners, schools and teachers; we will make sure the next generation can thrive in it.”

Since it was founded in 1987, the Dragon Awards has attracted high-quality applications from a variety of organisations across London and the UK.


To find out more about the Awards, follow us via @Dragon_Awards and #DragonAwards or email to be added to the mailing list.

Notes to editors:

*Firms shortlisted for this year’s Lord Mayor’s Dragon Awards:

Lord Mayor’s Award for Leadership in Digital Skills: Digital skills are critical to the UK’s competitiveness and to building an inclusive society. And this special award celebrates businesses, from across the UK, that are investing in the UK’s digital future

  • Barclays – Barclays Digital Eagles – Supporting students and young people to thrive in a digital world
  • BT PLC – Barefoot Computing
  • Nominet plc and Livity – Nominet Digital Neighbourhood

Heart of the City Award: celebrates companies that have only recently begun to have a strategic approach to social impact in Greater London.

  • Formation Architects – Formation Community – Outreach programme
  • N-Able - Responsible Business Programme

Boosting Social Impact Award: will go to a firm that is boosting its social impact in Greater London through its own schemes

  • Gate One and Coin Street: An entrepreneurial partnership
  • Mace Group – Mace’s Volunteering for Better Communities

Inclusive Employment Award: celebrates companies removing barriers to employment and progression for disadvantaged, underrepresented or minority groups

  • Goldman Sachs – Plumtree Court On-Site Diversity and Inclusion Programme
  • K&M McLoughlin Decorating Ltd – Skills for Jobs Initiative
  • Herbert Smith Freehills LLP – The Networked Scholarship Scheme
  • KPMG – Black Heritage Reverse Mentoring Programme

Innovation Award: will be awarded to a business developing new ways to benefit London’s communities

  • Refinitiv - TicketAid
  • Weil, Gotshal and Manges (London) LLP – Micro Rainbow – the UK’s first ever safe house for LGBTI refugees

Regional Impact Award: celebrates businesses with a London presence that are strengthening regional communities beyond the capital

  • KPMG – KPMG tackling the geography of disadvantage in social mobility cold-spots and opportunity areas
  • Marsh & McLennan – Support at Home Manchester (SAHM)
  • Standard Life Aberdeen plc – Better Futures inclusive employment programme

Community Partners Award: will go to a community organisation that is working with firms to achieve excellence in social impact. It recognises good practice and innovation in building and maintaining effective cross-sector partnerships that benefit Greater London.

  • City Year UK – For their partnership with Credit Suisse
  • In2scienceUK – For their partnership with UCL
  • IntoUniversity – For their partnership with UBS
  • Taylor Bennett Foundation – For their partnership with Taylor Bennett, Brunswick, FTI Consulting and Finsbury

The Awards form one part of the City of London Corporation’s commitment to working in partnership with businesses, charities and neighbouring boroughs to create a more responsible, inclusive and competitive London.

As part of this drive, the City Corporation funds Heart of the City, a charity supporting a network of London companies to run their own responsible business programmes. And the City Corporation boosts young people’s employability through partnerships with City firms on apprenticeships, mentoring and paid work placements schemes.

In partnership with the Social Mobility Commission and the Social Mobility Foundation, the City Corporation launched the world’s first Social Mobility Employer Index. It ranks the top 50 UK employers who have taken the most action to improve social mobility in the workplace, incentivising firms to improve access to top quality jobs for candidates from all backgrounds.

The City Corporation itself pledged to employ and sustain 100 apprentices and in 2017 and 2018, the Sutton Trust named the City Corporation as the best UK academy sponsor for its work supporting pupils from low-income families to achieve top grades.

Its charitable arm, City Bridge Trust, gives £20m every year to charitable and community organisations across London. And it works closely with the Lord Mayor’s Appeal, which runs City Giving Day, a celebration of the City of London’s philanthropic and responsible business activities.

Kristina Drake| Media Officer, Public Services

City of London Corporation

M: 07710860884

D: 020 7332 1125