"Sport and culture have the power to bring communities together and it's clear that all of this year's winners have been doing just that they should all be really proud of their achievements."
Andy King, Chief Executive at LinkLife
More than 200 people attended a prestigious awards ceremony celebrating the achievements of amazing people, clubs and organisations working in sport and culture across Rochdale borough over the last 12 months.
Taking place at Middleton Arena, with Rochdale’s very own star of stage and screen, Sue Devaney, as the guest host for the evening, a total of 16 awards were presented on the night to celebrate the rich diversity of skill, dedication and commitment shown day-to-day by local people.
Cllr Billy Sheerin, Deputy Mayor, of Rochdale, opened the ceremony with a welcome speech to a room packed full of nominees, all of whom had been shortlisted from a wide range of public votes submitted.
A panel of independent judges had completed the difficult task of selecting one winner in each category, with all judges commenting on the fantastic achievements of nominees over the past 12 months.
Each winner within the Sports categories from the night – eight in total – have also been put forward automatically for the Greater Manchester Sports Awards, which take place on Friday November 16, and now has the chance to be crowned as the best of Greater Manchester.
Andy King, Chief Executive at Link4Life, the independent charity behind the awards, said: “We’re really proud to have hosted these awards again this year and it was a fantastic night, helping to shine a light on the heroes of sport and culture in this region.
“We think it’s really important to celebrate the fantastic contribution that local people, clubs and organisations make and all of this year's nominees deserve a huge amount of credit for their efforts.
"Sport and culture have the power to bring communities together and it's clear that all of this year's winners have been doing just that – they should all be really proud of their achievements and our congratulations go to all of them.”
The full list of winners was as follows:
· Artist of the Year: Parvez Qadir
· Changing Lifestyles Recognition: Gladys Radburn
· Coach of the Year: Rob Johnson
· Community and Education Project: “Don’t Hate Me” by St Lukes Primary School
· Community Club of the Year: Rochdale Junior Netball Club
· Cultural Champion: Noreen White
· Cultural Event of the Year: “Generations” by Skylight Circus Arts"
· Culture and Health Award: Woody Craft at the Angel Project
· Disabled Sports Achiever of the Year: Bridgeability Football Club
· Facilitator of the Year: Middleton Popstars Academy
· School Commitment to PE & Sports: St Mary’s Roman Catholic Primary School
· School Commitment to Arts, Heritage and Culture: St Michael’s C of E Primary School
· Sports Achiever of the Year: Allana Shaw
· Unsung Hero: Lynn Jopson
· Volunteer of the Year: Barbara Bayliss
· Young Creative Award: Katrina Moore and Jade Kilduff (joint winners)
For more information about Link4Life and the range of sporting and cultural activity it provides throughout the Borough, visit www.link4life.org