WRG Volunteer John Hawkins Receives Heroes of the Waterways Award23 March 2015
On Saturday 21st March, Canal & River Trust (CRT) awarded Waterway Recovery Group (WRG) volunteer, John Hawkins, its Heroes of the Waterways Award. This new award aims to celebrate and recognise the long service of volunteers who have worked to support the canals and rivers.
Over the past 35 years John has been a dedicated waterways volunteer at both a local and national level. Last year alone he spent over 360 hours of his time volunteering with WRG on canal restoration projects across England, from helping restore Black Jacks Bridge on the Grand Union Canal to bricklaying at Meretown Lock on the Shrewsbury & Newport Canals. John is also a regular volunteer with the Rickmansworth Waterways Trust and is part of the of the ‘Learning at the Lock’ team, which encourages local primary school children to respect and value their waterways, as well as teaching them how to operate locks and about the history of the canals.
Jenny Black, WRG’s Volunteer Coordinator said 'John is a quiet unassuming character who is loved and respected by all WRGies. He is happy to pass on skills, share his knowledge and experiences … and have a beer with his fellow volunteers at the end of day! John’s commitment to volunteering, WRG and the waterways is truly amazing and the waterways community is lucky to have him!.'
John’s wife Tess, who sadly recently passed away, would have been particularly proud of John’s achievement. The couple enjoyed volunteering together, giving their time to help restore waterways and produce Navvies, and Tess would have loved to have seen her husband receiving the award in recognition of his hard work.