It was a great honour to be asked to become National President of the Lord’s Taverners in 2012. I enjoyed it so much I stayed in the role for three years before becoming a Trustee of the Charity. What a thrill it gave me to be part of team with so many extraordinary people giving of their time and money, to support disadvantaged and disabled young people.
The Lord’s Taverners is the official charity for recreational cricket and the UK’s leading youth cricket and disability sports charity. The charitable objective of both the Lord’s and Lady Taverners (Baroness Thatcher became Honorary Lady Taverner No. 1) is to ‘give young people, particularly those with special needs, a sporting chance’.
A sporting chance is the chance to interact, play sport, to compete, win and lose; to learn, have fun and make friends. We have put more than 1100 specially adapted minibuses on the road and you only need to see the thrill on the faces of these young people to appreciate the difference it makes to their lives. We create sensory rooms, recycled kit, multi-sport wheelchairs and we offer increased opportunities for regular participation in sport.
It is awe-inspiring for me to have followed in the footsteps of former Presidents such as Sir John Mills, The Prince of Wales, Eric Morecambe, Terry Wogan, Sir David Frost, Lord Cowdrey, Chris Tarrant and many other special names. I was proud to have given my time to the cause for three years and to pass on to Sir Michael Parkinson who has shown remarkable support.
Whilst I am happy back in the ranks as President of the West Kent region I am still enjoying hosting most of the big Taverners events. I spend much time supporting Jo Davis and her events team at HQ; we have achieved some great fundraising results recently.