The Value Match Foundation is dedicated to Paul Parkes-Lewis, who had a strong set of Values at the core of his being.
Throughout the development of the Foundation, we had Paul at the forefront of our minds, just simply because Paul was such a principled, good person, whose outlook reflected all six Values.
Paul truly tried to make the world a better place by his presence and actions. And even though he is no longer with us to choose his priority Values for himself, we hope that his spirit will live on through our work.
Anyone who knew Paul will recognise the description of him as someone with incredibly high standards. He was a very committed person and would not be swayed from any course of action that he did not believe to be morally right. Responsible Action captures the essence of Paul.
Paul’s work was designing and engineering racing cars, but he would only work for people with whom he was ‘Value Matched’. Paul wouldn’t build a car for anyone who cheated or bent the rules, or who was boastful or arrogant, or discourteous in victory or defeat. Throughout his career, Paul worked to the highest degree of precision so that his customers got the best possible standard of engineering.
But Paul was also very modest, so people generally didn’t know that he engineered the first 1000 bhp road legal car and that his racing cars broke dozens of records. Or that, accompanied by his best friend Pete, he made one of the fastest ever ascents up the final section of Kilamnjaro.
And when it comes to adhereing to following rules of behaviour, you’d never see Paul on a bike without a helmet on…
Paul was a family man who loved dearly his wife Chris and their two daughters, Emily and Daisy.
Although a skilled motor engineer and designer, Paul was never tempted by the glamour of the motor circuit. Choosing to live and work in Lincolnshire so as to provide his family with the quality of rural life that he valued.
Although famous for working long, intensive hours when engrossed in a project, money was not Paul’s main motivation. Apart from the belief that ‘there was always room for one more bicycle’ Paul could not be accused of ever buying or consuming more than was necessary to meet his needs.
Paul always gave of his time freely, teaching many people to cycle, swim and passing on his skills as an engineer and musician.
He would be proud of how Chris, Emily and Daisy have moved house to enable Emily to study animal management at college.
Paul had a strong affinity with nature and cared deeply about the protection of our planet. As a child he would spend days trawling the stream at the bottom of the family garden or study for hours the wildlife in the local pond and fields. Family holidays were spent boating, sea fishing and camping.
Paul loved being outdoors and always spent his breaks outside the workshop with a cuppa appreciating the farm animals, birds and landscape. He loved cycling, climbing, running, walking, swimming and stargazing. Basically, any activity where he could be at one with the natural world.
As a result Paul was an environmental egg head: innumerable facts about the creatures and features of the world were held in his head. Ecological conversations with Paul were frequent, fascinating and fun. The sky at night came alive when Paul described the constellations. And there’s a star up there named ‘Pauley Wauley’ after him.
Whilst Paul had an intense interest in many subjects and was serious in all his pastimes, light hearted and mischievous, he blended with great ease into many different communities.
As a child he trained for hours each day with St Helens Swimming Squad, competing in swimming and triathlons, but Paul was not competitive in nature and strived to beat his own personal bests rather than race against others. And whilst Paul took part in many endurance events throughout his life, it was the group participation that he valued above all else.
Paul had diverse interests: he played bass guitar as a teenager in a rock band ‘Bliss’ founded with his mates Kev and Dunc. A renowned member of the motorsport community, he also treasured the camaraderie of Belvoir Riders cycling club. Testament to this strength of community is that Colin and the boys at Ninemeister finished off Paul’s final engineering project and that members of the local community, especially Belvoir Riders, provided immeasurable support to Paul, Chris and the girls.
Paul loved laughter and was always teasing and larking about. But when in serious conversation, Paul was completely focused on the other person, genuinely interested in their views. Paul made people feel special and always reached out to someone who he thought needed a friend, support or advice. Paul was also very loyal and formed deep connections with others quickly because of his great empathy. In a short space of time, Paul’s surgeon Ian, became firm friends with Paul and the bond between them was so deep that Ian was best man at Paul and Christine’s wedding.
Always encouraging of others, Paul was always happy to provide advice modestly, in a way that made you feel that he was learning with you. Many people credit ‘Guru Paul’ with helping them make the difficult decisions which changed their lives for the better.
Paul truly lived his Values. He would help people wherever he could. Putting the interests of others before himself, Paul had the most tremendous inner strength based on his convictions. Testament to this is that Paul nursed and supported his dear friend Ian, when Ian was bravely fighting against cancer. Paul did this whilst knowing that he himself had cancer.
When Paul was moved to the hospice it was to the same room in which he had cared for Ian. It was there that Paul died, after enduring an incredible battle with one of the most unmanagable levels of pain encountered by the consultant, due to Paul having a BRAF genetic mutation which meant that his body was unable to prevent the spread of cancerous cells. Paul fought his illness in good heart and with much laughter, striving to prolong his life for his family and friends.
Although he is greatly missed, Paul is remembered with joy for his fine life, lived well, according to his values. We hope humbly, that others will be as inspired by Paul as we have been. In his memory we strive to embrace the opportunties that life offers us, trying to create good as we go along our way.