Chepstow Racecourse To Honour Award-winning Daniel Lewis


04 April 2023

Daniel Lewis is an impressive young man.

He impressed the judges when he won a St. David’s Day Award in the young person’s category at last year’s annual ceremony.

And he made a serious impression on others when he was invited this year to a Downing Steet reception after picking up another title – the Points of Light Award - bestowed by the Prime Minister’s Office.

In fact, so impressed with Daniel’s efforts as a one-man clean-up operation were those at Chepstow Racecouse, that they decided to name a race after him.

The Easter Monday meeting on April 10 will feature a race carrying his name, sponsored by First Cafes.

It was back in January of 2021 that Daniel started to clear away rubbish dumped on roads just above his home town of Merthyr Tydfil – one of Wales’ biggest fly-tipping eyesores.

It began with one 17-year-old working on his own on a hillside road, but thanks to Daniel’s shrewd use of social media it soon grew rapidly.

He set up a GoFundMe page and was quickly getting the backing of local businesses, which enabled Daniel to hire industrial skips to help with his clear-up.

“I managed to get rid of 40 tonnes of illegally dumped rubbish,” says Daniel.

“We’ve since stepped things up and I’m now working alongside Merthyr Council and South Wales Police to set up CCTV cameras.

“What’s happening with illegal fly-tipping was terrible and I just wanted to do something practical, so I started removing it, people saw what I was doing, and it grew from there.

“I just think it’s really important that we keep our local environment clean.”

Daniel’s not just brought hard work and a practical attitude to his one-man crusade, though. He’s also got real entrepreneurial flair, good enough to maybe get him up in front of Alan Sugar on The Apprentice one day.

The talented teenager – who is employed by Merthyr Council on a horticultural apprenticeship – did a deal with Step Up Skip Hire, whereby they drop off and collect community skips free of charge.

Until the reckless dumping stops, though, those skips still need to be filled. So, Daniel is out in all weathers, devoting his weekends to ensuring the roads above his home town are rid of the curse of the illegal dumpers.

“There are sites to take rubbish to, but you often need permits and there are restrictions on the number of times a van can go there,” says Daniel.

“That’s never an excuse for illegal dumping, but it shows it’s a problem that needs proper solutions that are going to work.”

As soon as Chepstow Racecourse caterers, First Cafes, heard about Daniel’s exploits they were keen to sponsor the race that would carry his name.

The company – who supply catering at courses from Brighton to Doncaster – will be supporting the race as part of the race day event that includes an Easter family fun day.

First Cafes managing director Wayne Fox says: “I saw on social media what this young chap Daniel had been up to, so I thought I’d like to sponsor a race linked with him.

“It’s obviously great work he’s been doing and extremely impressive. We sponsor one or two races every year at Chepstow and we were more than happy to give our name to this one.”

Chepstow Racecourse executive director Phil Bell says: “Daniel’s efforts on behalf of his local community is absolutely inspirational.

“He’s a very determined young man with a mission to succeed and we wanted to acknowledge his work and make people more aware of it.

“Hopefully, he will have a great day at Chepstow for what should be a wonderful day’s racing on Easter Monday, April 10th,”

The First Cafes Daniel Lewis Litter Champion Open National Hunt Flat Race (Class 5) will be our 7th Race on Monday's card. 

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