Search Area

Please type into the box below to search the site for your required information.

BICSc in the seventies

BICSc in the seventies

Laurie Foster Immediate Past Chairman 1975 welcomes guests at the Annual Dinner in 1976

Sholom Gordon Trophy

Peter Vickers training in Singapore



The beginning of the 1970s saw the Institute still in its formative years.

The membership grading was given an overhaul with the term ‘ordinary’ dropped giving way to the MBICSc membership grade. Through these individuals the branch structure grew with a Membership Committee formed to support and coordinate the activities. Special recognition for its instigation goes to Laurie Foster as Chairman and his wife Judith Foster, described as ‘the engine room’ of Branch activity.

The start of corporate involvement from businesses and suppliers added valuable financial support. Known then as Sustaining Members some are still engaged as our longest serving Corporate Members.

There is record of the first award of Fellowships to a number of individuals. The award of Fellow is still recognised as the honour bestowed on those recognised for their support and added value to BICSc. Previously proffered through the branch system of strict nominations with proposers and seconders the duty now falls to the Council to award a number each year.

1972 founder Eric Hill established the Guild of Master Cleaners which later became the Worshipful Company of Environmental Cleaners. This year also saw the first presentation of the Sholom Gordon Award, generously provided by Sidney Gordon. The solid silver model of a Columbus Dixon D1 floor machine traditionally awarded alternate years between within the Institute and a prominent person from the Cleaning Industry as a whole. Since renamed the Chairman’s Award in recent years it has always been held with the highest esteem by those it recognised.

Years of extended social and networking activity followed with the beginning of the cleaning shows providing valuable funds for cleaning education, Branch events and the annual dinners. Without the opportunities of social media forums of today there was greater reliance on the printed word. From the initial ‘Cleaning Industry News’ was born the trade press and the long and healthy relationship BICSc has experience with them ever since.

Education has always been at the forefront of the Institute. 1971 was the beginning of City & Guilds first major cleaning qualification known as ‘The 764’ with at least 40 colleges offering the course by the mid 70s but it would be another 10 years before Cleaning Operators Proficiency Certificate Scheme (COPC) was recognised as the practical part of this qualification.

International overseas growth provided connections to the Far East initially by the late Vincent Lim with Linda Ng and Peter Vickers. Prominence on the world stage continues with certification in many countries.

Conferences were another means of education and one in particular in 1982 sits on record as putting BICSc on the map, titled ‘The New Beginnings’ with a list of eminent speakers, Q&A and open forum, it gave the platform from where the exciting 80s would evolve.

Key events that happened in the seventies

NASA launch first ever space shuttle called The Enterprise

Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak create Apple Computer company

The CN tower in Toronto is completed

The Walkman is introduced by Sony

Check out BICSc in the sixties

Contact Us

9 Premier Court
Boarden Close
Moulton Park

Tel: +44 (0)1604 678710

© BICSc 2020

Policy Documents | The British Institute of Cleaning Science All Rights Reserved Company Reg 1524014