Regional Volunteer Awards spotlight — Henrietta Anstey

As nominations continue to fly in for the 2022 Regional Volunteer Awards, we are kicking off a series that shines the spotlight on previous award winners.

Today we hear from Henrietta Anstey, winner of the Newcomer to Officiating Award in 2021 and member of Bristol & West AC.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I got involved in athletics in my 20’s and started at City of Bath and enjoyed club runs! I took part in half and full marathons and then started to get involved in the committee as well as team managed for cross country. I was a member of Frome Running Club before I moved to Bristol and joined Bristol & West AC. Since 2012 I have supported track sessions, team managed, officiated, and also participated in a range of competitions.

Who nominated you and was it a complete surprise?

A complete shock! I was nominated by the clubs officials secretary and I was delighted to have been nominated!

What did winning the Regional Volunteer Awards mean to you?

I was very proud and pleased to be recognised. The club highlighted the achievement on social media and in the club newsletter.

It is nice to have the recognition and particularly as an official.

I chose to focus on officiating over coaching as I felt their was the greater need for this within the sport.

Has winning the Regional Volunteer Awards inspired you, or those around you, to become further involved in athletics?

I’m continuing to officiate and currently I am supporting lots of competitions. I have started to learn about field officiating as I haven’t decided whether I want to just specialise in one area. I recently supported the field officials at a National Athletics league fixture and it was a great experience. It also gave me an appreciation for how talented the high jumpers were! I have enjoyed retrieving shot puts, learning about the throws and getting a different perspective of the sport. I’m hoping to complete a L2 in Timekeeping within the next year.

Why do you think the Regional Volunteer Awards are important?

The importance of volunteers shouldn’t be underestimated.

The UK requires volunteers in so many aspects of life and athletics is no different. Highlighting athletics volunteers is so nice and acknowledges the achievements of those people involved in the sport. The regional awards is a great way to say thank you.

I would encourage new people to get involved with volunteering as it is great to learn new skills and give things back to your local club. I would encourage more people to officiate as the sport needs officials to sustain the sport and allow competitions to continue. The next generation of officials will enable competitions and races to happen.

Please nominate your club officials in the inspiring official’s category and encourage your new club volunteers in the newcomer to volunteering category as well!