LEADING figures in the Dales sporting community turned out in numbers to celebrate the second annual Matlock Mercury Sports Awards.
Once again, the event was held in the attractive surroundings of Matlock Town FC’s social club and was the culmination of weeks of voting and nominating from Mercury readers, with the aim of giving recognition to sporting achievement locally.
The winners were chosen after long deliberation and received handsome trophies from Hellison’s of Matlock and kindly sponsored by Irfan Shabir of Maazi restaurant in Matlock.
The runners-up gained framed certificates at the event, hosted by Mercury editor Amanda Hatfield.
The winners and runners-up in the five categories were: n Sportsman of the year: Winner – Andrew Randall of Derwent Bowmen Archery Club, runners-up – Ben Everett-Li (Derwent Hockey Club) and Jody Hart (Matlock Athletic Club)
n Sportswoman of the year: Winner – clay pigeon shooter Caroline Povey; runner-up – runner Steph Spencer
n Young sportsperson of the year – Lady Manners School pupil and sports all-rounder Sam Ellis; runners-up – sailing aces Joshua Haynes and Alice Woodings
n Team of the year: Matlock Town Junior Lions under 15s; runner-up – Derwent Hockey Club 1sts
n Unsung hero: Winner – Mike Briggs of Wirksworth Running Club; runners-up – Donna Hawkins of Matlock Canoe Club and Ken Dalton of Darley Dale Juniors FC.
At the event, Amanda Hatfield said: “This is the second year we have held the awards and I am delighted to report that we had double the number of nominations that we had last year.
“The idea of the awards is to give our readers the chance to reward those people in our own community who have shown commitment to the sporting arena.
“We want to highlight sporting excellence but also dedication and determination, be it from someone in the limelight or backstage making sure it all happens.
“So we are delighted with how well these awards have gone and hopefully we will be able to build on that next year.”
n The Mercury would like to thank Irfan Shabir and Maazi for sponsoring the awards and Matlock Town FC for providing the excellent venue and food.