Prime Minister praises Matlock volunteer

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The Prime Minister has praised a Dales man for his tireless work volunteering on a canal restoration scheme.

George Rogers, of Matlock, has been awarded the Point of Light award, which recognises outstanding individual volunteers. The 23–year–old is a canal restoration volunteer and canal camp leader for Waterway Recovery Group (WRG).

Prime Minister David Cameron said: “Through his work, George is helping to safeguard the heritage and culture of Britain’s canals for future generations, which is of great importance. He truly deserves this Point of Light award.”

George took part in a summer canal camp five years ago to help boost his confidence, since then he has helped in the restoration of 500 miles of UK waterways and he helps plan canal camps, which help build the confidence and skills of those who are involved.

George said: “Restoring the canals has long been my passion, and it is somewhat humbling to be recognised for something that I enjoy so much.

“The short and long term benefits to the other volunteers and the wider community make it a truly rewarding experience. This award also represents my firm belief that all volunteering is equally important – whether it be restoring the canals, building a school in Africa or mowing an elderly neighbour’s lawn, volunteering is the bedrock of society and I only wish I could do more.”

As well as his work with the WRG, he is on the committee for Friends of Cromford Canal and is one of 30 ambassadors for Volunteers Week.

Derbyshire Dales MP Patrick McLoughlin said: “I was delighted to hear about George’s award. Volunteering is a valuable way for anyone to spend time, but it is particularly welcome to hear of a young man encouraging other people to take part too.”