On Thursday evening, it was great to attend in the impressively refurbished Derby Roundhouse, the Derbyshire Sport Awards.
The awards are intended to award sporting achievement in Derbyshire and follow on from the local sport awards in each of the Derbyshire District’s, with our own High Peak one taking place with our Olympic Celebration.
A number of the High Peak’s winners had made the shortlist and you can view the full Derbyshire Sports Award’s Short list here.
The evening was also an opportunity to celebrate the Olympic and Paralympic achievements of Derbyshire folk, along with the achievement by Derbyshire County Cricket Club winning the LV Division 2 title and gaining promotion to the top flight of English cricket.
11 categories were awarded trophies, with the awards recognising not only those who are either at the top of or on their way to the top of their sport but also those involved at the important grassroots level without which we wouldn’t have the start of today and the future.
The guest of honour was Sally Gunnell OBE, and a lifetime achievement award was made to Olympian swimmer Ross Davenport, who announced his retirement last week and who during his career had competed at the Olympic Games in 2004, 2008 and 2012 along with winning four commonwealth games medals.
Winner of the Derbyshire Sport’s Sportsperson of the year award was Annie Last from Derbyshire Dales Annie who made her Olympic debut at the 2012 Games in London, after becoming the first British woman to qualify to compete in the MTB (Mountain Biking) event at the Olympic Games since Sydney in 2000.
Locally from the High Peak, we had one winner – Maddie Thompson from the Hope Valley who was the winner of the Origination Junior Disabled Sportsperson of the Year. Maddie who whilst still at a young age was part of the GB women’s wheelchair basketball team which finished in seventh place at the 2012 Paralympic Games and in fourth place at the Paralympic World Cup, and will no doubt be a rising star for the future, but still very much down to earth as is Whaley Bridge’s Jennifer Pinches who was one of the nominees for the Sportsperson of the Year.
The full list of winners is as below :
University of Derby Sportsperson of the Year
Annie Last (Derbyshire Dales – Cross Country Mountain Biking)
University of Derby Disabled Sportsperson of the Year
Jon Hall (Bolsover – Wheelchair Basketball)
International Golf Development Junior Sportsman of the Year
Jay Clarke (Derby – Tennis)
Derby City Council Junior Sportswoman of the Year
Molly Renshaw (Amber Valley – Swimming)
Origination Junior Disabled Sportsperson of the Year
Maddie Thompson (High Peak – Wheelchair Basketball)
Cooper Parry Club of the Year
Draycott and Long Eaton Table Tennis Club (Erewash – Table Tennis)
Derby College Coach of the Year
James Maudsley (South Derbyshire – Basketball) and Paul Standring – (Erewash – Cricket)
Derbyshire County Council Young Sports Leader/Young Coach of the Year
Beth Grainger – (Erewash – Various Sports) and Luke Sheldon – (Chesterfield/NE Derbyshire – Football)
Derby Telegraph Service to Sport Award
John Thompson – (Derbyshire Dales – Cricket)
Matrix Sport Sponsorship Award
Flint Bishop – supporting Sporting Futures
Active Derbyshire Active Workplace Award
Derbyshire Dales District Council
Lifetime Achievement Award
Ross Davenport (Amber Valley – Swimming)
It was great to see the huge number of talented sport stars, clubs and volunteers across Derbyshire, who with their commitment and dedication make a great contribution to the whole of Derbyshire and by helping to put the stars of the future on the road a contribution potentially to the whole of the country and the challenge for the various political types that were in attendance at the evening is to ensure that the oft talked about legacy from this year Olympics and Paralympics games will even in these current hard financial times become a reality.