Caroline Povey named Derbyshire Dales Sportsperson of the Year

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Commonwealth Games bronze medallist Caroline Povey made it a hat-trick of Derbyshire Dales top honours as the district celebrated an astonishing range of sporting talent.

Olympic trap clay target shooter Caroline, from Tansley, was crowned 2015 Sportsperson of the Year at the Derbyshire Dales District Council presentation event at Matlock Town Football Club.

Proud Caroline said: “It is great for clay shooting to be recognised and to win the Derbyshire Dales Sportsperson of the Year and I want to especially thank Derbyshire Sport and the Derbyshire Institute of Sport for their support.”

Also in the room were dozens of other Dales athletes competing at the very highest level across the globe in world championships, rubbing shoulders with unsung heroes who support grassroots sport and help their local clubs and teams to thrive.

The District Council organises the Sports Awards annually, and making the presentations was the Vice Chairman of the District of the Derbyshire Dales, Coun Tom Donnelly, who said: “The event showcased that amazing talent and commitment not only of our elite athletes but also Derbyshire Dales people who volunteer so much of their own time to ensure our local clubs and sporting organisations continue to be winners.”

The Derbyshire Dales Junior Sportswoman of the Year award went to British ladies’ ski cross champion Isobel Brown, beating junior lady national outdoor archery champion Eva Henderson-Hirst into second place.

Junior Sportsman of the Year was Finnbarr Brooks, who currently has 11 British titles in speed skating, ahead of runner-up in the category Lewis Brown, of Middleton and Wirksworth Wrestling Club, who is in the National Talent Squad.

Matlock Highfields School Leadership Academy member Callum Rose took the Young Male Sports Leader of the Year award ahead of Wirksworth charity fund-raiser Erik Walker, and two more Highfields School Sports Leadership Academy members, Sarah Needham and Annabel Macgregor, took first and second place respectively in the Young Female Sports Leader of the Year category.

Andy France, Head Coach of Derbyshire Dales Cricket for the past two years and a stalwart at Brailsford Cricket Club took the Volunteer Coach of the Year award ahead of Paul Armitt from Darley Dale Juniors FC. But there was joy for the Darley Dale club as it took the Club of the Year title in recognition of its contribution to the local community, ahead of Ashbourne Aztecs Football Club.

Taking the Team of the Year title were the U15s Wirksworth and Middleton Cricket Team, beating runners up Ashbourne Ladies’ Squash Team.

Osmaston Primary School’s incredible sporting success in the past year saw it win a special award made in conjunction with Rural Derbyshire School Sport Partnership.

Stalwart cricketing administrator and former top amateur player Jim Horton won the Unsung Hero Service to Sport Award in recognition of 60 years of service with Darley Dale, Wirksworth and Duffield cricket clubs.

The room heard that Jim had coached countless youngsters and passed on his skills, also championing women’s cricket in Derbyshire where he was influential in starting women’s cricket at Wirksworth and coaching age group girls for the Derbyshire Cricket Board.

Pic cap: Caroline Povey receives her award from Councillor Tom Donnelly. Pic by Roland Harrison, Xcite Images.