Lincolnshire Sport & Physical Activity Awards

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Active Lincolnshire is committed to providing opportunities for everyone in Lincolnshire to be active every day. We work with partners to address inequalities and inactivity, responding to the needs of people and places.

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Awards & Events

Serenity and a sense of community are just an AquaPaddle away

Serenity and a sense of community are just an AquaPaddle away

The reigning winner of our Active Event category from the recent Lincolnshire Sport & Physical Activity Awards, we spoke to Hannah Stockdale, one of the friendly faces behind AquaPaddle, Lincoln, to find out exactly how this award-winning event came to be.

Not Just a Walk, Or a Run in the Park

“We wanted to create, essentially, a park run but for paddlers,” said Hannah, one-half of the founding AquaPaddle team. After falling in love at first paddle around six years ago, Hannah along with Mick - co-founder and former kite surfer - has been passionate about spreading the stand-up paddleboarding gospel for a long time.

Knowing from personal experience just how much of a de-stressor and mood improver getting out on the water can be, the duo set up the Park Run for Paddlers charity - now known as AquaPaddle - just over a year ago.

“For us, it’s just about creating an opportunity to get out on the water - as long as you can control your craft, whatever that may be,” continued Hannah. “Being on the water, be that on a board, in a canoe or kayak, is a mental and physical thing. It’s so calming and allows you the space to be more removed from the rest of the world so you can garner a little perspective.

“Pre-covid paddling boarding was one of the fattest growing watersports. During covid and following it as lockdowns allowed more freedom, that popularity rose exponentially. It’s so accessible, that most people can take to it very well, and it is suitable for all ages, so it’s easy to see how and why it’s become so popular. We’re really passionate about it, and AquaPaddle allows us to spread that message.”

Creating a Community in the Blue

With park runs popping up in countless locations all over the UK, Lincolnshire included, the appetite of individuals locally opting to take to the water rather than any running routes was growing, and yet they still had no community sessions to get involved with.

“There were a lot of people doing their own thing individually, but there was nothing for groups,” confirmed Hannah. “Everyone, especially in Lincolnshire, has access to water. From Burton Waters and the River Witham to the coast, the Trent, Foss Dyke Canal, Newark Canoe Club, Brayford pool… whether you’re in the city, the countryside or actually on the coast water isn’t ever far away.

“At our very first event, we welcomed 14 paddlers. Now there will be around 44 on a day. We’re safe for up to 50, so we will need to think about a second event if this one maxes out. While people travel to us from all over the UK, we do have a core group of paddlers based right here in Lincolnshire. Everyone is so enthusiastic, posting across social media and supporting our events - we’re very much a community now.

“From young children who are out with their parents, to those in their 60s, you can see how beneficial being out in the blue is to everyone who comes along,” added Hannah.

“People may be on the water to unwind, they may be there to race, or maybe they’re trying it for the first time, no matter the reason our aim has always been to encourage people to get paddling as well as bring it to those who may not be able to access it otherwise. The award has recognised the effort of our volunteers and our community and those who donate so we can bring paddleboarding and experiences on the water to those who may not otherwise experience it.”

Sessions take place on Sundays at 10am. Find out more about Hannah, Mick and the gang, join in and learn about donating at

The 2024 Awards

Nominations for the 2024 Lincolnshire Sport & Physical Activity Awards will open soon. Follow us on social media to look out for our announcements.

Find out more about the 2023 Award winners here