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Volunteer Gwyn helps out for almost three decades

Gwyn Davies stepped onto the ice for the first time in 1989, and went on to become one of NISA’s longest-standing volunteers.

 

She has lent a helping hand at ice skating events for almost three decades, and has gone on to play a key part in the development of the IJS competitions and scoring system we know today.

 

Now aged 70, Gwyn has been based in North London most of her life. She became involved in ice skating almost 30 years ago when she took her daughter to Alexandra Palace for a lesson.

 

It wasn’t long before Gwyn got bored of watching from the side-lines and decided to put on a pair of skates herself.

 

At the time, she worked in IT and software management at a local college, and soon began to use her expertise to help the local ice skating club with their results and scoring systems.

 

Soon people came to recognise Gwyn at national ice skating events across the country, where she began to help with their organisation and running.

 

But she would also go on to have an integral part in raising the funds for Skate Southern's competition kit.

 

In 2000 Gwyn’s husband retired and offered his photography and videography services to the sport, also as a volunteer.

 

Gwyn helped out, but after she also retired in 2002 she put all of her energy into transforming Skate Southern's scoring system and competition kit.

 

Gwyn said: “When I retired in 2002 I was able to put more time to helping the growth of ice skating in the South.

 

“I missed the sense of belonging that you get used to when you’ve worked with a group of people regularly, so I got more involved in volunteering with my friends at NISA.

 

“At this point, all we (Skate Southern) had was the NISA kit for scoring competitions. We wanted to set up our own so we worked hard to raise funds for competition hardware.

 

“With a lot of hard work we managed it, and then spent a great deal of time training people up so that we could improve competitions.

 

In 2015 Gwyn received the NISA Award for Lifelong Membership, having been with the organisation over 21 years.

 

Gwyn pictured receiving her Lifelong Membership award with Ken Pendrey and Richard Beamish 

Now, as well as sitting on Skate Southern's Committee, Gwyn also contributes to the running and development of the IJS system we know today.

 

Commenting on her experiences as a long-standing volunteer Gwyn said: “Volunteering is such a rewarding experience, and the company is great. NISA judges and officials have all become firm friends of mine.

 

“I love watching skaters grow and develop, especially the youngsters. I even remember Penny Coomes coming to Alexandra Palace for the first time - now she’s famous worldwide!

 

“It’s very special to belong to a community and be able to give back, but finding volunteers is hard. People often have to give up time they don’t always have to begin with.

 

“Volunteering isn’t so difficult for me because I’m retired, but NISA has a whole network of judges and officials who are balancing their services with full time jobs and other commitments.

 

“I think it’s important to remember that these people manage to do it purely because they are motivated by love of the sport, which is pretty amazing."

 

The National Ice Skating Association is supported by a fantastic network of volunteers, including the entire judging and officials team.

 

We can’t say a big enough thanks to all the volunteers who put time and effort into supporting ice skating.

 

We’re always looking to welcome more on board, if you’re interested in becoming a NISA volunteer please contact kirstie.robinson@iceskating.org.uk