Mayor's Pride Awards

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News release: 13 March 2019

A teenage boxing champion, a community pub and the organisers of a talking newspaper were among the nine winners of the St Albans Mayor’s Pride Awards 2019.

Mayor Pride Awards
They were presented with their trophies at a ceremony at St Michael’s Manor, Fishpool Street, on Tuesday 12 March.

The annual awards celebrate the achievements of inspiring individuals, hard-working community groups and public-spirited businesses. Nominations come from the public with the winners decided by a judging panel.

Among this year’s winners were Anthony Agar, 17, who was declared Young Person of Distinction for turning his life around through his commitment to boxing.

The Hare and Hounds pub was recognised as the Community Oriented Business of the Year for its charity work.

And St Albans and District Talking Newspaper was presented with the Mayor’s Special Award for the help it has given to visually-impaired people.

Councillor Rosemary Farmer, the Mayor of St Albans City and District, said: “These awards give much-deserved recognition to the unsung heroes of our local community.

“I was hugely impressed to hear of the selfless work, dedication and commitment shown by this year’s wonderful winners as well as the other nominees.

“We received over 80 nominations from the public and it was hard to choose a winner in each category from so many deserving causes. They can all take a bow for contributing so much to our local community.”

The Mayor’s Recognition Award is given to an individual or group that has made a significant impression on the Mayor during his year of office. 

Cllr Farmer said: “The people behind our District’s Talking Newspaper have made a fantastic and effective effort to help some of the most disadvantaged people in the District. It is a wonderful enterprise and I am delighted to honour the volunteers behind it.”

The awards were sponsored by Morgan Sindall and this year’s winners were:

Community Champion of the Year – Stuart New. He has been an active member of the local branches of the Royal Air Force Air Cadets and the Royal British Legion for over three decades.
Cultural Innovation Award - Clare Suttie. She organises the Polar Bear Plunge, a charity fund-raiser that sees people dive into a freezing pool in New Year’s Day.  This year she publicised the event by putting imaginative decorations on post boxes in the run-up to Christmas.
Young Person of Distinction - Anthony Agar. He changed his life for the better when he joined a boxing club at 13. He is now studying business at Oaklands College and is a National Amateur Boxing Alliance champion.
Community Orientated Business of the Year – Hare & Hounds, St Albans. A pub that is very much part of the local community, taking a leading role in a number of charity projects. 
Environmental Champion of the Year – Incredible Edible Community Gardens. Foodsmiles have set up two gardens in central St Albans with the aim of teaching local people gardening skills, helping pollinators and other wildlife and enhancing the City Centre.
Voluntary Sector Award – Soroptimist International, St Albans and District. A local women’s group that has been serving the community since 1957. 
Inclusive Communities Award – Gordon Baisley, Victoria Playing Fields Football Club. He runs an inclusive youth football club that any child regardless of ability can attend.
Community Project of the Year - 'Box Cleva,' St Albans ABC. They delivered socially inclusive boxing sessions for 7-15 year olds with the aim of reducing anti-social behaviour. 
Mayor’s Recognition Award – St Albans and District Talking Newspaper. A weekly audio programme sent out free of charge to those with limited sight to keep them informed of what is happening locally.

Pictures by Tia Fields: Scenes from the Pride Awards.

Mayor Pride Awards
Mayor Pride Awards 2
Mayor Pride Awards 3
Mayor Pride Awards 5
Contact for the Mayor’s office: 
Alison Orde, the Mayor’s Civic Officer 
Tel: 01727 819544 

Contact for the media:
John McJannet, Principal Communications Officer, St Albans City and District Council. 
Tel: 01727-296130