Amber Valley Sports Awards Winners Celebrated

A celebration of sport in Amber Valley took place at Codnor Sports Club on Tuesday 10th November when the Borough Council hosted an event for the winners of the 2015 Amber Valley Sports Awards.

Winners and their families were invited to attend the presentation which took place at Codnor Sports Club. Individuals were greeted and presented with their certificates by the Mayor of Amber Valley, Cllr Trevor Ainsworth, Ilana Freestone, Director of Derbyshire Sport and Cllr David Taylor, Portfolio Holder for Housing and Public Health.

Each district in Derbyshire organises its own ‘Sports Awards’ as part of the partnership agreement with Derbyshire Sport. Local sporting stars are nominated in recognition for their hard work and dedication, either as a participant, coach or volunteer in local community sports clubs.

Individuals who win the district sports awards are automatically nominated for the ‘Derbyshire Sports Awards’. The winners are invited to a glittering awards ceremony in Derby – this year’s event took place on 12th November at the Roundhouse in Derby.

Mayor of Amber Valley, Cllr Trevor Ainsworth, said: “This was a fabulous event which really showcased the fantastic range of sporting talent and commitment we have at all ages in Amber Valley. Congratulations to all the award winners, we wish these marvellous sporting ambassadors luck for the future.”

Portfolio Holder for Housing and Public Heath, Cllr David Taylor also commented: “This was my first sports awards in my new role as portfolio holder and I am utterly amazed at the talent and commitment from our sports stars and volunteer coaches. They deserve all the accolades for their achievements.”

Amber Valley Sports Awards Winners Celebrated

Following are the winners from the 2015 Amber Valley Sports Awards:

Junior Team of the Year
Ecclesbourne School KS3 Girls Badminton Squad
Ecclesbourne School's KS3 Girls badminton team have gone from strength to strength throughout 2014/15 by reaching the final stage of competition at the National Centre Parcs Badminton Finals.

The girls started by winning through the Amber Valley regional qualifier in January before going unbeaten on their way to winning the Derbyshire County final at John Port School in early February 2015.

Overall Ecclesbourne won all 5 of their matches on route to being crowned county champions without dropping a game. The girls then went on to represent Derbyshire in the Midlands Badminton finals in March held at Loughborough University. Once again Ecclesbourne won all of their 6 matches convincingly, only dropping 2 games of a possible 30 to be crowned Midlands champions and gain a place at the national finals in May where they put up an excellent fight to finish in 8th place in the country.

Team of the Year
Belper Ladies Hockey Club 1st Team
Belper Ladies Hockey Club was established in 1920 and has grown in to one of the most successful clubs in the Midlands. With many teams across the leagues they cater for all levels of players. The club pride themselves on a family orientated atmosphere, welcoming attitude and ability to offer a range of teams to suit all standards.

2015 has been a fantastic year for the Belper Ladies Hockey Club 1st team as they won the Midlands Premier Division Title and gained promotion into the Northern Conference of England Hockey National League.

Club of the Year
Denby Cricket Club
Denby Cricket Club is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year and not only have its teams and players had some outstanding achievements this year but the club has also had a large impact on the local community.

On the pitch the 1st team plays in the highly competitive Derbyshire Premier League, the club also runs a number of other male and female teams. The club’s junior section boasts 11 teams who this season have won 13 competitions between them. Over 20 of the clubs players are involved in both male and female county representative cricket including some who play professionally for Derbyshire County Cricket Club.

Off the pitch the clubs dedicated group of outstanding volunteers have worked tirelessly to keep the club running whilst increasing access to the facilities for the local community.

The success of the club in Derbyshire cricket along with the huge and diverse range of activity hosted by the club is a tribute to a committed and dedicated group of outstanding volunteers, coaches and players.

Volunteer of the Year
Wynne Garnett
Wynne is a volunteer coach at Belper Town Football Club. He currently manages both the under 21’s & under 18’s teams, the latter of which he has managed since they were under 11’s. Wynne has had a lot of success coaching players who have gone onto to play in the first team at Belper and some who have reached even higher levels. These two football teams would not exist without Wynne’s tireless efforts.

His coaching success aside, Wynne gives up a lot of his own time and effort attending matches and training as well as organising transport and kit, all as an unpaid volunteer. Alongside his work with Belper Town, Wynne is also a long-time member of Ripley tennis club and has been a committee member for several years.

Wynne’s selfless dedication to grass roots football for more than a decade without looking for a word of thanks, makes him a well-deserving recipient of this award.

Coach of the Year
Rob Watson
Rob volunteers at the Ripley School of Boxing. He has a great talent for ensuring that each and every student that he teaches is treated as an individual and receives coaching which is tailored to their specific needs whether it’s amateur boxing or kickboxing.

Rob, who cannot compete himself due to a freak accident in his early twenties, takes the time to study each fighter in the gym, to look for their weak spots to help them improve. This dedication means that he has to take time away from his young family, but by doing this he is helping other people to achieve their goals.

Rob’s achievements this year include coaching Lee Wragg to win a W.K.U World Kickboxing Championship fight as well as coaching 2 other fighters to National title fight successes.

Community Award
David Walsh
David is a Community Coach who currently delivers a range of different sports across Derbyshire, in particular targeting disadvantaged communities. David has worked with a range of different groups in different environments including doorstep sports session on local parks, female only fitness sessions with Derby College and disability sports sessions with community groups in South Derbyshire.

Through his passion and dedication to coaching David has not only inspired more people to take part in sport but has also encouraged numerous young people to volunteer at his sessions and subsequently support some of them into employment in sport.

Young Sportsman of the Year
Struan Caughey
Struan trains with Derwent Valley Bowmen Archers in Darley Bridge and is also a member of the Archery GB Talent Academy. Struan is currently ranked number 2 in the UK and Number 1 in Scotland and his performance last year was rewarded with selection to represent GB at both the Youth World Championships in the USA and European Youth Champs in Rome this summer.

The summer wasn’t the end of Struan’s year however as in September he travelled to Samoa to represent Scotland at the Youth Commonwealth Games - the first time Archery has been represented at the Youth Commonwealth Games. Struan was recently awarded a Derbyshire Sport ICON talented athlete bursary to support his training for the next year.

Young Sportswoman of the Year
Sarah Glenn
Sarah has had an outstanding sporting year. At the age of just 16 she has been a dominant and important part of the Derbyshire Women's Cricket Team and Derbyshire U17's Girls team. She has performed consistently for both teams as a Leg Spin bowler and top order batter. Sarah has scored 637 runs and taken 28 wickets in 18 games for Derbyshire this season. Her performances caught the eyes of the England selectors as she was invited to attend the U19s England Women's Development Programme summer competition where she was subsequently selected for the winter programme. In recognition of her outstanding achievements this year, Sarah won the Women and Girls Player of the Year award at the recent Derbyshire Cricket Board Players Presentation evening.

If Sarah’s cricket achievements were not impressive enough, she also plays Hockey for Belper 1st team during the winter! Sarah captained the Belper girls Under 16 team who finished 5th in the country after competing in the national finals weekend. Sarah has progressed through the England national age groups and played full-back in all 17 England U16 internationals throughout this summer.

Junior Sportsperson of the Year
Harry Large
Harry has been a very keen cyclist from an early age and joined Matlock Cycling Club at the age of 9. He became interested in cyclo-cross and started to compete in the Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire cyclo-cross league. This involves attending competitions on a weekly basis in all weathers from September through to January.

Harry achieved first place for his club and 5th place in the region in the 12-and-under category in the 2014/15 league. He also received a special award for attending all of the competition events regardless of the weather.

Due to his phenomenal success, Harry has recently been invited to join the Matlock Youth Development Cycling Squad and has been taking part in an indoor track racing programme at the new velodrome in Derby. This new-found interest led him to enter the Regional and National British Schools Cycling Championships on the 7th June 2015. Despite facing a gruelling head-wind Harry battled through to achieve 1st place and become East Midlands Regional schools cycling Champion in the boys U13 category, this result also earned him a very respectable 4th place nationally.

Disabled Sportsperson of the Year
Jessica Poxon & Max Foord

Jess is a truly inspirational  and talented boxer who this year became the 1st Derbyshire senior female champion in the international Haringey Box Cup. She has just returned from a very serious hand injury that put her out of boxing for 2 years and left her with just 6 weeks to train for this major title.

Jess works hard to increase awareness of the condition ‘APD’ (a form of hearing dyslexia) and has spoken publicly about the condition on Radio Derby shortly after her win.

The sheer grit and determination showed by Jess speaks volumes as to why she has won this award.

Max Foord
This year, Max has claimed both the British and European title for Raw Bench Press and qualified to compete in the World Champion Powerlifting Competition 2015.

Max has just left Portland Sports College where he excelled as a sports leader and developed crucial skills to become a sports ambassador; gaining him respect and recognition from both his peers and tutors.

Max is determined to keep pushing to be the very best he can be in his field and is working towards a career in the sports industry and more opportunities to champion inclusive sport.

Sportsman of the Year
Benjamin Chapman-Lilley
Benjamin plays for Denby Cricket Club and has represented the Midlands regional side at the English Schools Cricket Association Bunbury Festival where he capped off an impressive performance by scoring a century.

Benjamin’s performance at the Bunbury festival led to him being picked to play in an invitational game which was made up of the best 22 players in the country and serves to identify players who are good enough to join the England development programme.

Benjamin is certainly a cricketer who we will see more of in the future.

Sportswoman of the Year
Hollie Webb
Hockey player Hollie has had a brilliant year for both her club Surbiton who won the 2014/15 Premier Division Title and her country as she was a part of the England team who became European Champions at the London Olympic Park in August.

Hollie started playing Hockey at the age of 7 for her local club Belper Hockey Club. She fell in love with the game, and was soon playing for Derbyshire County team. Hollie then achieved the highest accolade; playing for England. She competed in the under 16, 18 and 21 year age groups at the same time as trying to keep on top of her school work/exams, A levels and finally her degree!

Hollie is currently balancing her work as a trainee accountant alongside training and making preparations for 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

Lifetime Achievement Award
David Denton
David is a truly deserving recipient of this award for his services to running. As well as being the founder of the Mansfield Half-Marathon, David has single-handedly created and looked after a number of races in Derbyshire including the Derby mid-week 1 mile and 5km races, Tour of Derwent Valley (4 races in 4 days) and the New Year’s Day Hangover Race in Milford. All of these races have been going for over 20 years which is testament to the dedication and time that he has invested into each of them.

David also organises junior Fell Races for youngsters in the villages of Parwich, Kirk Ireton and Ilam over the summer and has done so for at least ten years. These events are free to enter. He organises them purely out of the goodness of his heart. For the rest of his races, David charges a modest entry fee some of which goes towards a charity he founded which helps families in Kerala, India.

David is a well-known figure among runners in Derbyshire and it is certainly time that the passion and effort that he has put into increasing the number of people running is recognised.

For further information please contact: Nikki Ottowell, Sport and Active Lifestyles Partnership Officer, Tel 01773 841428

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