Meeting a community hero from Cranleigh

PUBLISHED: 15:46 19 September 2016 | UPDATED: 16:18 19 September 2016

Colin presents prize to a young winner at last year's Cranleigh Agricultural Show (Photo Pete Gardner)

Colin presents prize to a young winner at last year's Cranleigh Agricultural Show (Photo Pete Gardner)

Pete Gardner Photography

Each month, Surrey-based author Miriam Wakerly celebrates our villages’ unsung heroes. This time, she heads to Cranleigh, where she discovers a special man who supports the community in an impressive variety of ways

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine August 2016

***

In this month’s missive, I am pushing the boundaries! Firstly, Cranleigh is reputedly the largest village in England – hardly a ‘small village’. Secondly, Colin Young, by virtue of his well-deserved MBE, awarded in 2000, is not an unsung hero. Lastly, this true pillar of the community extends his reach beyond his immediate locality.

Indeed, while not one to sing his own praises, this is a man who modestly, and altruistically, gives his energy, experience and financial support across the whole of Cranleigh, with special focus on services to the young.

Wheels in motion

Coming from a business background, Colin and his charming wife, Pauline, set up the logistics management company Cranleigh Freight Services around 40 years ago, and although so-called ‘retired’ he is still chairman, while she still has an active hand there, too, and their son is now running the business.

As a self-made man, Colin’s life experience means he is well suited to mentoring. So, for the last 20 years, he has been helping out in this way at schools in Cranleigh (Glebelands), Godalming (Broadwater), Guildford (Bishop Reindorp), Portsmouth (Springfield) and Oxted Secondary School, something he continues to do today. For many years, he was also a director and chair of governors at Grafham Grange School in Bramley.

In the past, he has supported The Cranleigh Youth Band in various ways, too, funding and organising trips to Holland, footing the bill for hotels, vehicles and other events.

Youth sporting activity he sees as vital and so he has supplied kit, funding and encouragement to Cranleigh Basketball Club, the Under-14s Rugby Club and Under-15s Football Club. He has also assisted in organising four-day rugby trips to France and Holland. Wow!

As his business is logistics, help is often in the form of vehicles. One special case was providing transport for a 15-year-old leukaemia victim who touched his heart, as well as a holiday for the young patient and his family. In addition, Colin’s uplifting words helped him soldier through a difficult time and that teenager is now 31 years old and going strong!

Show on the road

In addition, he has supplied vehicles in the past to assist traditional village activities such as the annual bonfire and carnival, and for many years was president of the local St John’s Ambulance and The Motor Neurone Society helping with the maintenance of two ambulances. He was also a member of the committee that arranged a special proms in support of Macmillan Nurses, providing transport and admin amongst other things.

But his involvement in the local community goes beyond youth and vehicles, and is seemingly endless in its scope. For instance, he has also been the president of Cranleigh Show for the past six years.

Unsurprisingly, Colin Young MBE also received the High Sheriff award for services to the community, presented by Sir Richard Stilgoe, the then High Sheriff of Surrey. Yes, his achievements and services have been acknowledged, but still you may not have heard of him. Well, you have now!

• Miriam Wakerly’s novels are set in the fictitious Surrey/Hampshire village of Appley Green. Read Miriam’s Ramblings at miriamwakerly.blogspot.co.uk and follow her on Twitter at @MiriamWakerly

More from Surrey Life

Yesterday, 15:29

Erin Boag, the first lady of Strictly, came to the UK 23 years ago. She bought an A to Z, stuck a pin in the map and found Surbiton which she had heard about through the TV series, The Good Life. She still lives there, along with husband Peter O’Dowd and son Ewan

Read more
Yesterday, 11:52

This edition of Surrey Life features all the local ingredients to make this month special

Read more
Yesterday, 11:36

Great things to do in Surrey this weekend: art exhibitions, walks, concerts, theatre, places to visit and other events and ideas.

Read more
Friday, September 21, 2018

We round up 10 of the most beautiful photos of Surrey shared on Instagram this week…

Read more
Thursday, September 20, 2018

Professional matchmaker Hayley Bystram discusses how to overcome the challenges of returning to dating in mid-life and later

Read more
Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Surrey is a beautiful, green and affluent county and I’ve certainly enjoyed living here the last 11 years. Towards the end of April 2018, Surrey Police released its latest crime statistics and we are still one of the safest counties in the country.

Read more
Tuesday, September 18, 2018

After a glittering ceremony at G Live Guildford on 13 September, we announce the winners of the 2018 Surrey Life Food & Drink Awards 2018

Read more
Tuesday, September 18, 2018

To much fanfare, Guildford has welcomed restaurant royalty to town but can the food live up to the spectacular castle view?

Read more
Tuesday, September 18, 2018

A choral singing boom is giving fresh meaning to the sound of music with new and traditional choirs pulling in more recruits than ever. Miriam Wakerly explores Surrey’s contingent

Read more
Monday, September 17, 2018

With beautiful countryside, stunning villages and plenty of bluebells during spring, Surrey is an amazing place for a stroll

Read more
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

A leading property agent is going back to his roots after a 32-year career by joining one of the UK’s foremost property search companies covering Hampshire, Surrey, West Sussex East Sussex and Kent.

Read more
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Is it any wonder Surrey is one of the most popular places for a weekend retreat?

Read more
Monday, September 10, 2018

The 2018 Surrey Life Food & Drink Awards are fast approaching, with the ceremony taking place at G Live Guildford on 13 September. We’re delighted to announce our finalists…

Read more
Monday, September 10, 2018

Recently named in the top 50 restaurants in the UK, the Michelin starred Matt Worswick at The Latymer is currently in the middle of a run of guest chef nights. Matthew Williams visits as Gravetye Manor’s George Blogg joins the family for the evening

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest


Follow us on Twitter


Like us on Facebook

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Property Search