An Olympian came to town and presented awards to Burnley’s own sporting heroes.
Five time Olympian and world and European swimming champion Mark Foster was guest of honour at the Burnley Community Sports Awards at Burnley Mechanics on Thursday when amateur sportsmen and women received accolades for their outstanding contribution to the town through sport. Organised by Burnley Leisure, the award winners were:
l Community Club of the Year (sponsored by Surridge Sport) – Burnley Rugby Club. The club provides a safe and friendly environment for players, parents, and supporters to be involved in rugby. Gives coaching in the majority ofBurnley schools and juniors have represented Lancashire. It is one of only three clubs in the area to run a girls’ squad.
The 2nd team won the North West Cup last year and the 3rd team have won promotion.
Runners up: Burnley Bobcats ADM and Burnley Tennis Club.
l Coach of the Year (sponsored by Burnley Rounders’ Club) – Michael Robinson.
The head coach of Burnley Bobcats has developed one of the best squads in the North West, with swimmers achieving national and regional qualifying times. Bobcats was promoted in the North West Arena League for three seasons and is now in the Premier League. He has coached disability swimmers to compete in European Championships and Commonwealth Games. Runners up: Dave Burley and Simon Grime.
l James Bullas Young Volunteer 0f the Year (sponsored by Volunteer Burnley) – Patrick Martin.
Patrick has been volunteering for Burnley School Sport Partnership while studying at university. He has organised competitions and delivered the school cricket coaching programme. Runners up: Megan Hunt and Luke Haythornwhite.
l Adult Volunteer of the Year (sponsored by Marvtech Ltd) – Matt Holden.
Matt coaches at Burnley Bobcats and led a weekend swim camp for club swimmers. He attends galas to support the club’s swimmers. The club is growing, partly down to Matt’s work creating pathways to the elite swim squad from Burnley Aquatics Club.
Runners up: Gemma Harrison and Ian Barton.
l School of the Year (sponsored by Smith Jones Solicitors) – Blessed Trinity RC College.
Pupils access leadership, games, fitness and individual pathways. Year 10 assist in sport in primary schools and staff are part of the School Games programme. They have boxing and Zumba for pupils who have low self-esteem, lack confidence or find PE difficult.
Runner up: Wellfield Church School.
l Rising Star (sponsored by UCFB) – Ryan Marsden.
Ryan trains with Black Knights Kickboxing and Burnley Combat Sombo. He hopes to become a coach and will soon become a junior referee and judge in kickboxing. He has competed in championships abroad and holds gold medals in ICO British Championships and light contact kickboxing and is world champion in light contact.
Runners up: Connor Barrow and Jordon McDonald.
l Health Champion (Sponsored by Step2it Group) – Bob Stewart.
Bob was chosen for his personal achievements and support helping others make positive lifestyle changes after beating his own health problems by becoming more active, changing his diet and stopping smoking. He joined the Community Fit Club, supports the Healthy Lifestyles team and leads Active Spaces walks.
Runner up: Sufia Khatun.
l Brian Fenn Community Award (sponsored by KM Accountants) – Jadene Christian.
Jadene has been a volunteer for Burnley Wood Youth & Community Group since she was 14 delivering sport, play, arts, crafts and youth engagement work. When the group lost its premises she carried on at other community buildings, in parks and schools. She is a member of Volunteer Burnley and helps at holiday clubs.
l Vicki Taylor Lifetime Achievement Award (sponsored by Burnley Leisure) – Linda Moores.
Linda has been playing and coaching netball for 25 yearsand is passionate about helping young people achieve their full potential. Her guidance has helped many young players reach county standards and she organises the local league.
l Service to Disability Sport (sponsored by Burnley Play Partnership) – St Leonard’s Primary School, Padiham.
Pupils with disabilities are involved in sport and able bodied pupils play disability sports such as blind football, boccia and table cricket for a better understanding of disabilities. Its work has been recognised by Ofsted.
l A Special Recognition Award went to Terry Hephrun of the CVS, a strong advocate for sport in Burnley and chairman of Burnley Sport and Physical Activity Alliance, who is stepping down from his many commitments to enjoy retirement.