|Dale Vince OBE|
29 August 1961 |
Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, England
|Residence||Stroud, Gloucestershire, England|
|Known for||Owner of Ecotricity, chairman of Forest Green Rovers|
Dale Vince, OBE, is a "green energy" tycoon, former New Age traveller, and British industrialist who has become noteworthy as the outspoken owner of the green electricity company Ecotricity.
Early life and career
Vince was born in Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, leaving school at 15. He spent time as a New Age traveller. In 1991 he saw his first windfarm ("I thought, either I can carry on by myself with the windmill on my van, or I can get into the big stuff") and in 1995 he founded the Renewable Energy Company. In 1996 he launched his first wind turbine supplying "green electricity".
Three months after joining the club as a majority shareholder, Vince became the club chairman.
In February 2011, Rovers players were banned from eating red meat for health reasons, and a few weeks later the sale of all red meat products was banned at the club's football ground, leaving only vegetarian options as well as free-range poultry and fish from sustainable stocks.
Vince has also introduced a number of different eco-friendly developments at the club including the installation of solar panels on its New Lawn home ground, the use of a solar-powered robot grass mower, and the creation of the world's first organic football pitch.
Whilst studying, Vince met and married Kathleen Wyatt in 1981. The couple subsequently became new age travellers together, and had a son in 1983. They separated some years later, and Wyatt subsequently raised the couple's son alone. They divorced in 1992.
Divorce and financial claim court case
After Vince had made his fortune, Wyatt, who had lived what was later described in court as "16 years of real hardship", lodged a financial claim of £1.9 million against Vince in 2011, nearly 20 years after their divorce. The Court of Appeal rejected the claim, stating it had "no real prospect of success" and was an "abuse of process". However, in March 2015 the Supreme Court set aside this decision, ruling that there was no time limit in law for claims for financial provision, and the claim could progress in the High Court. Lord Wilson said the court must have regard "to the contribution of each party to the welfare of the family, including by looking after the home or caring for the family", but the claim only had a prospect of "comparatively modest success" with a £1.9 million payout "out of the question". In a statement, Vince branded the court's decision "mad": "I feel that we all have a right to move on, and not be looking over our shoulders. This could signal open season for people who had brief relationships a quarter of a century ago."
Vince has made donations to both the Labour Party and the Green Party. Prior to the 2015 UK general election, he was one of several celebrities who endorsed the parliamentary candidacy of the Green Party's Caroline Lucas.
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- Andrew Davidson (3 August 2009). 1000 CEOs. Dorling Kindersley Limited. pp. 383–. ISBN 978-1-4053-3467-9.
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- "Dale Vince: Tilting at windmills: how to turn the UK green". The Independent. Retrieved 12 March 2015.
- Rankin, Jennifer (10 February 2015). "Ecotricity gives £250,000 to Labour amid 'existential threat' from Tories". The Guardian. Retrieved 13 March 2015.
- "ENERGY firm Ecotricity will today confirm they are joining forces with Forest Green Rovers". Thisisgloucestershire.co.uk. Retrieved 10 August 2010.
- "Dale Vince becomes Forest Green chairman". BBC Sport. 9 October 2010.
- "Burger ban begins at Forest Green Rovers football club". BBC News. 10 February 2011. Retrieved 11 February 2011.
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- "Forest Green Rovers football club installs solar panels". BBC News. 4 December 2011.
- "Robot lawn mower used by Forest Green Rovers football club". BBC News. 21 April 2012.
- "Forest Green Rovers spread manure on football pitch". BBC News. 15 June 2011.
- "University Announces Honorary Doctorates and Fellowships". University of Gloucestershire. 9 August 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2015.
- John Bingham (12 March 2015). "Delayed divorce battle: Ecotricity founder Dale Vince's New Age traveller ex-wife wins cash fight". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 12 March 2015.
- Owen Bowcott (12 March 2015). "Woman wins right to seek money from ex-husband 30 years after breakup". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 March 2015.
- "BBC News – Woman could win cash payout 20 years after divorce". BBC News. Retrieved 12 March 2015.
- "Dale Vince divorce ruling 'like cashing in old lottery ticket'". BBC. 12 March 2015. Retrieved 12 March 2015.
- Elgot, Jessica (24 April 2015). "Celebrities sign statement of support for Caroline Lucas – but not the Greens". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 22 July 2015.