England Cricket star unveils winning charity minibus design

8th Sep 2014
England Cricket star unveils winning charity minibus design

Following the conclusion of England’s international summer of cricket against India this weekend, T20 hero Chris Woakes unveiled the winning drawing of the Lord’s Taverners minibus design competition at Edgbaston today during the presentation of one of the charity’s accessible vehicles to Victoria Specialist Arts College, a school for 180 pupils with disabilities in Birmingham.

The Lord’s Taverners – the UK’s leading youth cricket and disability sports charity – asked young people with disabilities from across the country to draw ‘what playing sport means to me’. The competition, which started in February 2014, was won by Liam Hall-Hicks from Edith Borthwick School (Braintree, Essex) who will see his design feature on his school’s new Ford Transit minibus next year.

The competition was launched during the lunchtime interval at the One Day International between Scotland and England at Mannofield Park, Aberdeen on Friday 9 May 2014. Warwickshire and England all-rounder Woakes was on hand to help showcase the shortlisted designs at Lord’s Cricket Ground after the second Investec Test against India in July. Woakes got involved by drawing ‘what playing sport means to me’ himself; however his design didn’t make the final cut.

Chris Woakes, Warwickshire and England all-rounder, commented: “It’s great to be involved and give something back to such a worthwhile cause and support just one of the many initiatives that the Lord’s Taverners runs to get young people active. I don’t think my own effort was any good, but congratulations to Liam on his winning design!”

Victoria Specialist Arts College’s new minibus is the second of four minibuses sponsored by Investec Wealth & Investment following fundraising from the 2013 Investec Ashes Cycle Challenge, which raised over £250,000 for the Lord’s Taverners and a number of local charities last summer.

Mark Northover, Peter Horton and Tim Hurst took part in the Cycle Challenge from the Birmingham office of Investec Wealth & Investment. Office head Adrian Quin said: "The Lord's Taverners does wonderful work so we were proud to play our part, and it is great the way they help local causes up and down the country. I am sure the minibus will be well used."

Lord’s Taverners accessible green minibuses are designed to give young people with physical and learning disabilities the opportunity to see the world beyond the walls of the organisation that cares for them. The minibuses enable young people to enjoy new places and experiences, from sporting activities to trips to the seaside. The Lord’s Taverners has put over 1,050 minibuses on the road since 1976 thanks to generous support from individuals and companies like ECB Test Match sponsor, Investec.

Paul Robin, CEO of the Lord’s Taverners, said: “The Lord’s Taverners has a long heritage in providing specially adapted minibuses and to have Chris Woakes here, having played for England yesterday, is really special for the charity. To present Victoria Arts Specialist College with this minibus from the money raised by the 2013 Investec Ashes Cycle Challenge and to have the children’s input in the design just adds to the occasion.”

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