We are making 2021 the Year of the Volunteer and shining a light on the brilliant work volunteers do for all forms of cycling across the home nations. We want to acknowledge the huge contribution volunteers make to cycling, and recognise the wide variety of roles undertaken to activate, support, lead, and deliver at all levels.
Each month, we are taking nominations from our across the regions and home nations. If you think someone deserves a mention, get in touch on social media with your respective regional or national teams or via @BCCoaches on Twitter.
A huge thank you and well done to all that have been nominated in May 2021 from everyone at British Cycling.
Name: Sue Jennings
Region: South West, Plymouth
Role and/or Qualifications: Breeze Champion & Guided Ride Leader
Sue has, last month, achieved her 400th ride as a Breeze Champion and Guided Ride ride leader! She was one of the first Breeze Champions trained in Plymouth back in 2007 when the programme was first rolled out. She has continued to lead rides ever since. Sue was the Breeze, Devon & Cornwall, Area Co-ordinator for a number of years and has gone above and beyond by joining the local cycling campaign and volunteering with Sustrans. Sue was also runner up at the Devon Sports Awards for Devon Volunteer of the Year in 2018.
Name: Trevor Lote
Region: West Midlands
Role and/or qualification: Ride Leader (HSBC UK Guided Rides
Trevor returned to cycling three years ago upon retirement, training as a Ride Leader in February 2020. Despite the pauses in activity since training, Trevor has become an established leader in the region. He is part of the Easy Riders group delivering rides on local traffic-free infrastructure through parks and open-spaces of North Birmingham, ideal for new or returning cyclists. Trevor, particularly enjoys the social aspect to the programme and is keen to ensure all participants enjoy themselves too. He is always willing to hang back to ensure everybody has a great experience, offering them encouragement and entertaining the whole group with his jokes.
Name: Maryka Sennema
Region: South East
Role and/or qualification: Regional Secretary & Womens Workgroup Member
Maryka is an active member of the British Cycling South East Regional Board. Like many of our wonderful volunteers she balances this alongside an active family, while also training and racing with her club, Paceline. Maryka officiates as a regional commissaire and is part of a driving force behind womens racing both regionally at a national level. The regional secretary role commands much organisation, and Maryka delivers this in abundance. Marykas drive and tenacity to consistently strive for a more efficient and membership driven approach are exemplary and she puts so much passion into the south east region- THANK YOU!
'‘Shout-out’ for all those in the region who’ve pulled together for our first pilot road race coming to the region 30th May 2021.
Name: Team MK: Lucie Gallen, John Ritchie, Tony Walton, Stephen Dicks.
Role and/or qualification: Event Organisers, Commissaires, and Accredited Marshals
Team MK is one of Central Regions biggest youth cycling clubs. It is based at the National Bowl in Milton Keynes. It was formed in 1997 by Bob Varney who is now the DS of the Womens UCI Drops Team. The club is active in so many areas from MTB, Cyclo Cross, Road and Circuit, they also have a Triathlon arm. The club was one of the original clubs who set up Central CX league. They are still an integral part of this league; they have been the first club to run youth racing after the restart last Summer and are back in April.
Key mentions go to Lucie Gallen, John Ritchie, Tony Walton and Stephen Dicks, who are key drivers to make things happen within the club, in addition to the club work their roles also include event organisers, commissaires and accredited marshals.
Name: Karen Shackleton
Region: Yorkshire (Leeds)
Role and/or qualification: Breeze Champion
Karen recently hit her 150 ride milestone. She is a very active member of the Breeze team and genuinely dedicated to offering fun, friendly and challenging bikes rides in Yorkshire. She spends several months of the year working in France, but even then still finds time to attend webinars and virtual training from the Alps! Not only does Karen deliver rides of varying ability she: supports the Monday night Breeze track session; has developed track to road rides to build peoples confidence on the road, and supports other ride leaders to build their confidence. Karen is a true inspiration and a huge asset to the Yorkshire Breeze team and the Breeze Programme.
Kirsty Midgely, Area co-ordinator said: "Karen is always positive and will go out of her way to help and encourage everyone"
Name: Ashfield Cycling Club
Region: East Midlands
Role: Event Organisers
Ashfield CC traditionally run a series of well attended circuit races at Darley Moor, near Ashbourne in Derbyshire. Richard Slaney a new organiser with no previous race organising experience, along with a number of club members and the backing of the rest of the club, took over the delivery of the series in the midst of the Covid events lockdown. Working closely with the Regional Events Officer building on the good work done by the previous organiser they have refreshed the event programme to offer racing opportunities for all categories of competitor and taken on board the added covid requirements. In conjunction with delivering the events they are building the volunteer team and a plan to develop the next organisers and event volunteers to have the knowledge and experience to take over when the time comes. The first 2 races have been well received and had really strong entry numbers of 110 and 118 riders respectively with field sizes limited to 30 per race.
Name: Stuart Gilmour
Role: Event Organiser
Stuart has been magnificent and hugely successful in enabling children and adults the opportunity to race again in the South. Stuart organised the VC Venta Youth Circuit Races at the earliest opportunity in April after lockdown and the hard work was done when planning into the unknown was really difficult! This first event also was the first event in the new South Region Youth Circuit Series and his commitment meant the series got off to an excellent start. Every field was just about full, and it was great to see the youth girls and boys having their own races, no mixing; this made for some very exciting racing, and more importantly, it was a lot of fun! Stuart undertakes his work with passion, a big smile, a can do attitude, and his organisation and communication with riders, parents, and officials is excellent. There are already a number of events in the calendar for the rest of the season led by Stuart which we’re all looking forward to enjoying in the coming months, including another round of the Youth Series – and this is on top of all the great work he does week in week out at club level at VC Venta. Stuart’s efforts have resulted in many smiles on the faces who have waited so long to race again. The duck may have been paddling hard underwater, but on the surface it floated along a smooth pond. The engagement with parents and riders was excellent and he oversaw a really slick operation. Thank you Stuart!
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