A CHARITABLE Halesowen volunteer who has given up more than 130 weekends to support Cancer Research UK events has won a prestigious national award.

Carl Lubbock has volunteered almost every weekend for the past 10 years during Race for Life season, which runs from May to September, while he’s also worked right through the night several times at the charity’s Shine London marathon night walk.

His dedication to the cause has earned him a national Flame of Hope Award in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the cause.

The awards acknowledge remarkable efforts in fundraising and volunteering made by people from all walks of life.

Carl, a 58-year-old retired systems analyst, scooped the Event Volunteer of the Year accolade, beating off stiff competition from across the UK.

He picked up the award during a special ceremony in London hosted by Cancer Research UK’s chairman, Sir Leszek Borysiewicz.

An audience at the Merchant Taylors’ Hall heard how Carl is often the first volunteer to arrive on site at 5am and the last to leave. At Shine London, Carl has been known to volunteer for double shifts, working from 4pm until 10am in the morning.

Lorna Hartley, Cancer Research UK’s area events manager for the Midlands, who nominated Carl for the award, said: “Carl is amazing. He’s consistently blown us away with his energy, enthusiasm and commitment to the cause.

“Despite the early starts, travel and long days, he is completely hands-on, setting-up courses, marshalling and supporting new volunteers.

“Always smiling with a great sense of humour, he’s a great ambassador for Cancer Research UK and such a huge support to our Midlands Events Team now that we’d be lost without him.”

Carl, a keen cyclist who retired from E.ON 10 years ago, admitted to being slightly mystified by the nomination because he enjoys volunteering so much.

“After retiring early I was looking for something worthwhile to do,” he said. “I went along to volunteer at Worcester Race for Life 10 years ago and was made to feel so welcome I signed up to as many as I could.

“It’s an amazing event and it’s become such a big part of my life I really miss it during the winter months.

“I’ve made some great friends and I volunteer almost every weekend from April to September. It’s a lovely feeling to be given this award but the people I find really inspiring are the ones who find the time to volunteer despite still having jobs and raising a family.”

Carl’s experience as a volunteer has so inspired him that this year he’s decided to take part in the Shine London event – Cancer Research UK’s marathon night walk - on September 22.

Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, Cancer Research UK’s Chairman, said: “These awards are our way of honouring incredible people like Carl who give their time freely to help us raise money and promote greater awareness of the disease, and yet ask for nothing in return. Without their support we simply wouldn’t be able to host our events and raise so much for our life-saving work.”

Cancer Research UK’s ambition is to ensure that, by 2034, three-quarters of people survive their disease for 10 years or more after a cancer diagnosis.