Access & Environment Award (sponsored by PeakUK)

This award celebrates individuals, groups, clubs or organisations that have made a clear positive impact on access and environmental issues. This might be for campaigning locally, negotiating better access for paddlers or going above and beyond to protect and preserve or enhance the environment.

Voting is now open until Sunday 5th December where you can help us decide who will be the overall winner.   We may be bias, but we think James should be the winner.

James White

Nominated by Dave Rawding

Reason for nomination 

Kingston Kayak Club has always taken improving the environment importantly. However, for one of our young members, this is a true passion. James White, 17 years, has been kayaking for 6 years and has taken part in every river and canal club cleanup. The latest was on the weekend of 18/19th September 2021 when he played a huge role in removing 60 trolleys and 250 bags of rubbish from a badly littered inner city drain in Hull, which is integral to Hull’s flood drainage. If you didn’t know the city was devastated by flooding in 2007 causing millions of pounds of damage and destroying many homes (including those of club members), so restrictions to this waterway have serious consequences for the city. 

James’s enthusiasm means he doesn’t just get the easy to reach items, he clambers up banks and into thick shrubbery to ensure that the area is as clean as it could be. His energy and enthusiasm is contagious. Generally, he arrives from 6th from college to club nights early and does a litter sweep of the urban area our premises are located in. However, he does far more looking after the environment away from canoeing. Through his D of E journey, he has become a member of 2 local Facebook groups ‘The Wombles of Beverley’ and ‘Rubbish Friends’. Both Hull and East Riding groups promote locals’ to clear up their neighbourhoods and then celebrate the achievements with photos of collected bags.

His dedication is such that James doesn’t restrict his efforts to where he lives but will travel to clear up anywhere he knows his efforts could make a difference. He keeps a record of his and his family’s activity and to date, he has collected 240 bags of rubbish (not including the club clean ups).

 In August, James was one of the young helpers at the KKC summer school and NCS programme, both helping inner city children get involved in paddle sports. I wrote the text for this on the 26th September I was informed that early this morning whilst involved in a hospice charity walk he found a distressed person on the wrong side of the barriers about to jump into the River Humber. This is a notoriously dangerous tidal estuary. Through his quick actions, persuasive communications and detailed relaying of information the emergency services were dispatched and resolved the matter leading the individual to safety. He is a beacon of hope for the younger generation and the well-being of the planet and oceans. 

How to vote for James! 

Please click here to complete the following voting form and cast your vote for the nominee of your choice, and feel free to share this far and wide within your circles. This voting form will be live until midnight on Sunday 5th December, so be sure to get your votes in.