Professor Stephen Hawking won a Special Award for Excellence in Accessibility at the Awards Ceremony at BT Centre, London in 2012. The 200-strong audience heard a specially recorded acceptance speech from Professor Hawking – one of nine prize-winners in categories covering volunteering and innovation to fundraising and community news.

The Awards are organised by AbilityNet and BT to recognise the many ways that people use computers and the internet to help make the world a better place. Professor Hawking received the Special Award for inspiring disabled people to achieve their true potential.

Accepting the Award he said: “I am delighted to accept this Award as recognition for all the truly great things that disabled people can achieve when technology has given them the chance to shine.  I was lucky to have been born in the computer age.  Without them, my life would have been miserable and my scientific career impossible.

“AbilityNet continues to help disabled people in all walks of life and the Tech4Good Awards remind us that technology is a vital part of human existence. They show us that the right tools in the right hands can help everyone, regardless of our frailties, to achieve our true potential and advance as a civilisation.”