Sporting successes and achievements in fields as diverse as fencing and martial arts to athletics and rugby have been celebrated in the Moorlands once again this year - albeit a little differently than in previous years due to the Covid pandemic.
The Staffordshire Moorlands Sports Awards, co-ordinated by the District Council, showcase local sporting talent alongside the often unsung dedication of volunteers and those who offer behind-the-scenes support to our local sporting stars.
And whilst the health emergency has meant the usual prize giving ceremony couldn't go ahead, the Council was still keen to honour their achievements by delivering the awards and certificates to the winners.
Amongst the recipients are an athletics coach who can boast a podium-placed World Champion obstacle-courser amongst his successes; a gymnastics teacher, coach and judge with almost half-a-century of experience; a 14-year-old fencer who last year was placed fourth in England for boys in his age group; a hockey club who did not lose a single fixture in their first season; a busy volunteer who is responsible for the welfare of 26 football teams; a former hockey club captain who is now club chairman; a rugby and football player who has captained county sides in both sports; a junior Ju Jitsu team where 10 of the 15 competitors taking part in a national competition came away with medals; and a current World, European and British Masters Indoor Athletics Champion in his age category.
Councillor Mark Deaville, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Leisure and Sports, said: "This has been a year like no other but the power of sport and activity to unite us - and bring pleasure and a sense of normality to so many - remains unchanged.
"The achievements of our award winners are truly admirable and I'm delighted that despite all the challenges of 2020 we're still able to shine a light on their dedication, commitment and resilience. We have so much talent here in the Moorlands and I congratulate all our winners and everyone who was nominated.
"The Covid pandemic has demonstrated the ability that moving more and being active has to improve both our physical and mental wellbeing. I hope the inspirational stories of our winners this year, together with the undoubted benefits being active brings, will encourage even more of us to be more active in the new year - and who knows it could be you winning an award next time!"
The Club is proud to announce that our Welfare Officer, Georgina Chandler, was recognised in these awards.
Volunteer - Leek Town FC's Georgina Chandler is the club's Welfare Officer - a very busy role which involves looking after the welfare of three adult teams; two ability counts teams; eight junior boys teams; seven junior girls teams; and six mini boys teams. Her role includes making sure qualifications are up-to-date for all coaches and helpers and ensuring any helpers are DBS checked. As if that wasn't enough, Georgina also ran the hugely successful 'Wildcats' scheme last year which saw over 50 girls attending weekly training sessions from which three news girls teams were formed. She continues to run weekly training sessions for girls alongside the Mini Blues and is head of girl's section.
The full list of winners can be found here