Groups celebrate taking the honours in annual Northamptonshire Community Foundation awards

Northamptonshire Community Foundation Awards. Royal and Derngate, Guildhall Road, Northampton. Victoria Miles. NNL-140926-082839005

Northamptonshire Community Foundation Awards. Royal and Derngate, Guildhall Road, Northampton. Victoria Miles. NNL-140926-082839005

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The winners of the annual Northamptonshire Community Foundation Awards were revealed last night.

The awards evening was held at Northampton’s Royal Theatre and was sponsored by the University of Northampton and Rathbones Investment.

Twenty-two groups from across Kettering, Corby, Daventry and Northampton were up for an award across six categories – Education and Skills, Health and Well-being, Tackling Disadvantage and Exclusion, Arts, Culture and Heritage and the High Sheriff Initiative Award.

In memory of Lady Juliet Townsend, past Patron of Northamptonshire Community Foundation, Lady Juliet’s husband John Townsend presented a special Award for Volunteering.

Lady Juliet was instrumental in helping to establish and grow the Northamptonshire Community Foundation and was a huge supporter of the work that the foundation has done in funding mainly volunteer led groups across the county.

The eight nominations highlighted the outstanding commitment, passion and energy given by the volunteers and their value to the community groups they support.

The winner of this award, June Clay ,has been a volunteer at Northamptonshire Carers Centre for more than 15 years.

Performances by the Serbian Ensemble St Eliah Corby and Liberty Drum Corps entertained the guests who saw the winners take to the stage, including a World War One History group, a community learning centre helping to increase employability and life skills, a group providing music therapy for people suffering from neuro-degenerative disease, and a group providing a specialist service to increase awareness of solvent abuse.

Professor Nick Petford, Vice Chancellor, of The University of Northampton, said: “I am delighted that the university is the key sponsor of these awards and of an evening that recognises and celebrates the achievements of so many organisations and individuals. The University of Northampton’s mission is to transform lives and inspire change – everyone nominated in these awards has exemplified this aspiration and, through their passion, commitment and dedication, made a significant positive impact on their local community”.

The winners were as follows:

Education & Skills Award

Winner: Brookside Community Hall

Health & Wellbeing Award

Winner: Pink Rooster

Tackling Disadvantage & Exclusion Award

Winner: Accommodation Concern – Kettering

Arts, Culture & Heritage Award

Winner: Higham Ferrers World War One History Group

The High Sheriff Initiative Award

Winner: Solve It

The Lady Juliet Townsend Award for Volunteering

Winner: Mrs June Clay, a volunteer at Northamptonshire Carers Centre.

The judges were Nick Petford, David Summers, Editor of the Chronicle & Echo, Chris Knight of Hewitsons, Ian Tansley of Rathbones Investment, Mark Mulvey of Hevey Building Supplies, Morcea Walker MBE Northampton Carnival Arts Consortium, NCF Trustee Sally Robinson and High Sheriff, Dr Ahmed Mukhtar.