TALENTED sports people in the Maldon District were acknowledged at their annual Sports Awards ceremony.

Award winners received an array of prizes including shields, trophies and health and fitness memberships donated by Places for People Leisure.

The event, held at Blackwater Leisure Centre on Monday night, was highly attended and featured a total of 11 awards being presented to worthy winners by dignitaries and special guests.

Cllr Ron Pratt, Chairman of the Council’s Community Services Committee said: “It is extremely positive to see such a wealth of talent, commitment and determination within the District.

“It is both inspirational and motivational to see the sporting passion within the Maldon District and be part of its growth and development.”

One of the awards was jointly won by Maldon Prom Parkrun and Junior Parkrun and Craig Vernon certainly believes the Changing Lives through Sport and Physical Activity award is an accolade that is wholly merited.

Having raised thousands of pounds for local charities through his running after first being encouraged to take up the sport at the Prom Parkrun three years ago, the 53-year-old is a first-hand example of someone whose life has been changed by the venture.

Vernon said: “It has turned me around and so many charities have benefitted from me getting off the couch and doing the local Parkrun.

“It shows how much you can do by doing it and that anyone can do it.

“It’s really great for them to get this reward.

“It has such a nice community feeling to it.”

The awards presentation party included Jason Fergus, Director of Active Essex, Carl Wakefield, Principle of the Plume Academy, Cllr Miriam Lewis, Leader of Maldon District Council and Cllr Peter Elliott, Chairman of Maldon District Council.

Maldon District sports award winners 2016: Physical activity project of the year award – Lucy West, Happy Hearts; Services to disability sport – Mike Hill, Barracudas Swimming Club; Changing lives through sports and physical activity – Parkrun & Junior Parkrun; Active workplace – Places for People Leisure, Danielle Hoad & Sabrina Johnson; Unsung hero – Roy Pipe, Maldon Hockey Club; School or college of the year – The Plume Academy; Sports club of the year – Blackwater Junior Triathlon Club; Coach of the year – Lucy Terkelsen; Disabled sports personality of the year – Conor O’Hare; Young sports personality of the year – Arron Edwards-Hill; Sports personality of the year – Alisha Duce.

The nomination process for the Active Maldon Sports Awards 2017 will be open from May next year.

Nomination forms will be available from the Maldon District Council Leisure and Sports Development Team.

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