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Chris Hawkesworth inducted into International Whitewater Hall of Fame

Chris Hawkesworth has been inducted into the International Whitewater Hall of Fame as an Advocate in recognition of being a white water influencer for over a fifty-year period.

Since the 1960’s Chris has contributed to the white water community as an adventurer, expedition leader, competitor, lecturer, manufacturer and contributor to the development of standards for helmets and other safety equipment.

Chris, who worked for British Canoeing for over 20 years, has been responsible for contributing and developing many white water projects and weir safety.

In his home county of Yorkshire Chris was the driving force behind the legendary Washburn - the dam-release white water facility offering 1.5 miles of fast flowing water for paddling enthusiasts.

As early filmmaker, Chris was pivotal in capturing landmark events. The film ‘Colarado’ featured an expedition to the Grand Canyon in 1971 and introduced white water paddling to new audiences, after being shown on UK television and distributed to over thirty countries.

Chris remains involved in the sport and is the Chair of the Manvers Lake and Dearne Valley Trust in South Yorkshire, which attracts tens of thousands of visitors per year.

Speaking about his accolade Chris Hawkesworth said:

“It feels brilliant! You put your life, body and soul into it, so when something out of the blue like the International Whitewater Hall of Fame comes along, it’s really nice.”


The International Whitewater Hall of Fame (IWHOF) is a programme of the American Canoe Association (ACA) to recognise and celebrate significant contributions to paddle sports.

The Class of 2019 Induction Ceremony took place in Nuremburg during the annual PaddleExpo industry trade show.

Chris was inducted alongside Hermann and Christa Kerckhoff - responsible for Canada’s longest-running white water instruction school, and Joe Pulliam - an outstanding contributor to white water as a manufacturer