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Young runner wins volunteer award from England Athletics

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Holly Newman and Jo Pavey

MELKSHAM’S  Holly Newman has been awarded the South West Young Volunteer of the Year Award by England Athletics for her work in sport, with Olympian Jo Pavey presenting her with the award. 

Holly, aged 20,  is a member of Avon Valley Running Club (AVR) and coaches young runners, and volunteers for local running events including parkrun. 

The presentation was made at Exeter Golf Club on Saturday 29th September. Long-distance runner, Jo Pavey, who is a five-time Olympian and World, European and Commonwealth medallist, was guest of honour to present the awards. Holly started running with AVR in 2010, when she joined her parents at a beginners’ group. A couple of years later, she joined JAVR (Junior Avon Valley Runners) and Trowbridge parkrun, when those organisations were set up. As an adult member of AVR, Holly has been encouraged to take up coaching for the juniors.

She completed a LIRF  (leader in running fitness) course last year and has recently become the first woman in the club to gain a CIRF (coach in running fitness) qualification. Holly now coaches junior runners at AVR and is a member of committees for  junior runners, adult runners and the club’s social committee.

Holly said, “I was very honoured to get nominated by the club as there are a lot of people who also give a lot of their time and people who have helped me complete my CIRF course.

“I was really thrilled to meet Jo Pavey, I have watched her compete on TV many times, so it was a real honour. 

“Jo was lovely and made lots of time after to talk to everyone. She talked to me for quite a while after, giving me tips and sharing stories. She was a really lovely down to earth person.”

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