John Stewart wins Sheila McKechnie Long-Term Achievement Award as a campaigner

“1% inspiration and 99% perspiration – the secret to great campaigning” – according to John Stewart, who has been awarded the Long-Term Achievement Award by the Sheila McKechnie Foundation.  John has been an environmental campaigner for over 30 years. In the 1980s and the 1990s he was centrally involved n the campaign against road building. He chaired and organised an umbrella group of campaigners across the UK, fighting a huge expansion plan for motorways and trunk roads.  Then in the 1990s John became involved in campaigning against the aviation industry. He became Chair of HACAN in 2000, and after 2003 chaired a diverse coalition of campaigners which successfully defeated plans for a 3rd Heathrow runway in 2010. John chaired the AirportWatch network until 2014.  He has also been Chair of the Campaign for Better Transport, and the UK Noise Association, as well as being on the steering group of the Campaign Against Climate Change. He has written a number of publications, including “Why Noise Matters”, in 2011.  In 2008 John was voted Britain’s most effective environmental campaigner, by the Independent on Sunday. He is leading campaigns against the current Heathrow 3rd runway threat, and against unacceptable levels of aircraft noise. 


John Stewart SMK award

John Stewart SMK award 3

John Stewart Long-Term achievement award


John Stewart SMK award 1

John Stewart SMK award 2

The Sheila McKechnie Foundation (SMK) was established in 2005 to help develop a new generation of campaigners who are tackling the root causes of injustice. Set up in memory of Dame Sheila McKechnie, SMK is entirely dedicated to helping campaigners create positive and lasting social change.

SMK runs programmes for individuals and groups providing support, advice and a place to share information on key areas of effective campaigning: from strategy, tactics, and targets to evaluating successful campaigns.





The Independent on Sunday has come out with its list of the top 100 environmentalists in the UK. It is a quirky list–many of the names are little known to people in Britain, let alone the rest of the world. They have been chosen for the impact they have made, many on local issues, rather than for their great fame. The top environmentalist is John Stewart, a man who has been working quietly for years on transportation issues and now spearheads the campaign against airport runway expansion at Heathrow Airport, outside London.


The IoS Green List: Britain’s top 100 environmentalists
Sunday, 12 October 2008

“Britain’s most successful transport campaigner has come top of the first comprehensive list of the country’s most effective greens, compiled by The Independent on Sunday.”

“The little-known John Stewart, who leads the onslaught against a third runway at Heathrow, soundly beats far more high-profile figures – from Jonathon Porritt to Zac Goldsmith, from Sir David Attenborough to Prince Charles – to take the honour. He does so in the wake of an important breakthrough for his campaign – the announcement by the Conservative Party that it plans to scrap the runway in favour of high-speed rail links that would supplant short-haul flights.”

[Sadly the IoS no longer has this story on its website].



Earthshakers: the top 100 green campaigners of all time


At Number 82 John Stewart, roads campaigner