Published November 18, 2019 at 10:53
Community heroes from across Rossendale were crowned at Rossendale Council’s 2019 Community Awards at the Riverside, Whitworth.
The awards, held on Thursday, November 14, celebrated individuals and groups who go the extra mile to support others and help make their neighbourhoods better places to live.
120 nominations were made, with 34 finalists in attendance hoping to scoop one of eleven awards handed out on the night.
In the Community Partnership Community Group of the year category winners came from Whitworth in the form of the University of the 3rd Age – a movement of retired and semi-retired people who come together to continue their educational, social and creative development – and in Bacup where the Natural History Society and Museum picked up the award.
Community First Responders were the winners in Rawtenstall – saving lives isn’t the average voluntary activity but what an outstanding job they do at it – and in Haslingden where Haslingden and Helmshore Civic Pride scooped the prize. This dedicated team of volunteers make a huge difference to brightening up the area.
Rossendale Volunteer of the Year was awarded to Barbara Horne for the huge contribution she has made in Rossendale over 40 years of volunteering.
Thomas Wise picked up the Young Volunteer of the Year Award for always being ready to help and take on absolutely anything that needs doing for the community without a fuss.
In the Rossendale Community Event of the Year category, Bacup Now Events Programme scooped the main award.
Outstanding Community Contribution to the Valley was handed to the volunteers of Rossendale Talking News Paper Association who provide local news and events to anyone who is blind, partially sighted and other people in need.
Rossendale Leisure Trust also sponsored awards on the night. Sports Club of the Year was given to Haslingden Girls and Ladies FC. The club is run by very hard working volunteers who have long encouraged participation for girls in sport.
Graham Wright of the Rossendale Harriers took home Sports Coach of the Year. This is given in recognition to many years devoted to coaching young people and adults in Rossendale.
Young Sports Volunteer of the Year was given to Isobel McEwan – a talented gymnast who has volunteered countless of hours to support fellow pupils. She has created a positive and lasting impact on fellow pupils and loves developing people skills.
Entertainment was provided by two local organisations: Rossendale Ukulele band and St. Anne’s Community Choir.
The flowers were made by Flowers and Friendship who work with residents of care homes, some with dementia, to create the table centres and stage displays.
Cath Burns, Director of Economic Development, said:
This was a wonderful positive, uplifting event and a great opportunity to give recognition to the many volunteers that we’re blessed with in Rossendale. They touch every part of local services and support people in a variety of ways, making such a huge difference to people’s lives.
Congratulations to the eleven winners – you are the beating heart of the borough and make it the special place it is. Very special mention also to the 34 finalists and all 120 of the nominees. Rossendale would not be what it is without you and I only wish every one of you one could receive an award because you deserve it.