We are delighted to report that our Rear Commodore Andy Bennett was among dedicated volunteers from across the UK who had their endeavours recognised by Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal at the annual RYA Awards ceremony in London 24 November.
Andy Bennett of Littleton Sailing Club (LSC) received an RYA Lifetime Commitment Award for his dedication to boating.
The RYA Awards are presented to outstanding individuals or groups nominated by their sailing clubs and class associations and selected by the RYA Awards Panel.
Before the awards presentation, RYA CEO Sarah Treseder presented Her Royal Highness with a pair of marine binoculars on behalf of the RYA’s Members to mark her 30 years as President of the RYA.
In nominating Andy LSC wrote: Andy has been volunteering at Littleton Lake since 1993 and has served as Commodore of the former BP Sailing Club and at LSC and on various club committees, most recently as Rear Commodore Facilities. This role encompasses the management, maintenance and repair, with a team of helpers, of LSC’s extensive boundaries, utilities and structures.
A natural team player, Andy was responsible for organising major repairs after serious floods in 2014. He is helping to negotiate a lease with the landlord and has represented the club during the Thames Flood Relief Scheme consultations.
Andy stills sails regularly, helps run races, organises cruising days, takes new members out sailing and assists both the juniors and Phabsail, a local group for sailors with disabilities. His wide-ranging support has been instrumental in making LSC a vibrant and successful club.
Andy said of receiving the award: “I feel incredibly honoured that my contribution to a sport I love has been recognised in this way. I am indebted to those who have supported me over the years, without them I would not have been here today. The awards ceremony was a wonderful experience and meeting and chatting with other award winners made for a most enjoyable day.”
RYA Director of Sport Development, Alistair Dickson concluded: “Volunteers are the lifeblood of our sport. Today has been an excellent opportunity to celebrate the fantastic work our volunteers do to support boating activity in all forms throughout the UK.
“All of the stories behind these special people have been truly inspiring to hear and it’s really an honour to be able to say thank you and celebrate their amazing achievements.”
Do you know a volunteer who always goes the extra mile? Nominations for the 2018 RYA Volunteer Awards are now invited. For more information and to make a nomination visit www.rya.org.uk/go/ryavolunteerawards