The Downham and District Sporting Heroes Awards are being held on 11th October 2012 at Downham Market Town Hall. A celebration of sporting excellence, this is the final event of the town s Olympic calendar. Frances Rayner, Village Games Sport Co-ordinator for Downham Market, has been working with the Town Council to gather nominations in ten categories all designed to recognise the success of individuals, teams and events where excellence has been achieved. “Downham Market is full of talented sports people. People who not only play but coach and support others” Frances said. “The town also has many fantastic sporting clubs and organisations which attract people into the town from the surrounding villages and it is so important that we recognise this especially during this amazing sporting year. The Town wants to say thank you and celebrate their success publicly.” In preparation for 11th October, downhamweb has been given a sneak peak of three of the nominees: Phil Bancroft Phil is a rowing coach at Denver Sailing Club and coaches adults and beginners through to advanced rowers. He has been nominated for Coach of the Year for the work he has been doing to encourage adult beginners. He has great skill at making learning fun and instills confidence to progress. Matt Pyatt Matt has been nominated for Sportsman of the Year. An inspiration to all, Matt came back to running 3 years ago and has taken Ryston Runners by storm. He has had to work hard to regain his running fitness and gained national success this year winning the 800m at the Masters Track and Field Championships. Matt has now been selected to represent the East in the annual inter area challenge match. Downham Market Village Games Team The team of thirty participants has been nominated for Team of the Year. They all live in Downham Market and went to the Norfolk Village Games finals in July winning their category for the second year running and making them the best small market sporting town in the county. Twelve sports were entered and the team achieved six first places, five second places and one third place which set them apart from the other five finalists. The ticket-only evening will be hosted by David Blackmore from the EDP and Sarah Mawby from Downham Market Town Council with guest speaker Olympian Paul Evans. There will also be a genuine Olympic Torch on display which guests will be able to hold. A good proportion of the two hundred people invited to the event are young people. It is hoped that the good work of the Olympics can be continued, inspiring this next generation to remain enthusiastic about their sport and carry on developing their skills and abilities.
Categories at the Downham & District Sporting Heroes Awards include:
Masters Sports Person of the Year, Sportsman of the Year, Sportswoman of the Year, Junior Sports Person of the Year U12, Young Sports of the Year 12-18 years, Team of the Year, Disabled Sports Person of the year, Support in Sport, Sports Event of the Year and Coach of the Year. Each category has been sponsored by a local business or sporting organisation and event organisers would like to thank Downham Sports Federation, Downham Leisure Centre, Winning Ways, West Norfolk Sports Development Unit, Active Norfolk, The College of West Anglia, the EDP and Lynn News for all their support.