A Swindon man has had his voluntary work to promote cycling in the town recognised with an award from a national charity.
Lewis Lawton, from Shrivenham, received the Sustrans Volunteer Award for the South West, which acknowledges outstanding effort and contribution in promoting cycling in the region.
Lewis has been a Sustrans Volunteer Ranger since 2008, and became the Swindon Group Coordinator in 2011, which involves signing and maintenance on the National Cycle Network but also fundraising, and organising events and public rides.
In addition he contributes a great deal to the local cycling community, which was a key factor in winning the award. “Lew has shown commitment and tenacity as a volunteer as well as a passion for supporting cycling in Swindon,” explained local Area Manager Alistair Millington who nominated Lewis for the award.
As a qualified cycling instructor and an accredited cycle mechanic, Lewis has helped hundreds of people in Swindon get on their bikes. He has also cycled all over the world, raising more than £20,000 for the charity Mencap, and until recently was the Swindon Bicycle User Group (BUG) Chair.
“Lew has been an unsung hero of the cycling community in and around Swindon for many years,” commented Keith Williams, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, Strategic Transport and Leisure, who presented the award.
“This award is a fitting tribute to the commitment he has shown to promoting cycling, working with national bodies and developing and publicising routes amongst many other activities.”
After receiving the award, Lewis commented: “I am really following in my father’s pedals. He was instrumental in the creation of the British Cycling Federation and indeed was, as a volunteer, its first president.”
“It is really nice to be recognised in this way, and in my turn I would want to recognise the hundreds of hours of volunteer time given by the Sustrans Ranger Group here in Swindon.”
“Without their dedication the National Cycle Network from South Cerney, through Swindon, to Marlborough and beyond would not attract as many cyclists as it does.”
In 2012 leading charity Sustrans received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Volunteering Award – the highest recognition for volunteering, with an equivalent status to the UK MBE.
Lew is also the Cycle Medic, providing a mobile cycle repairs across the Swindon area, as well as running DIY cycle maintenance courses every month. To arrange a visit mail: email@example.com