Dudley Mayor’s civic awards winners celebrated at event

Unsung heroes from sport, business, environment, arts, community and education were celebrated at a charity ball with Dudley's Mayor – after the original event was delayed by the Covid pandemic.

Award winners on the night
Award winners on the night

The Mayor of Dudley, Councillor Anne Millward, hosted the evening alongside former mayor, Councillor David Stanley.

The evening at Copthorne Hotel in Brierley Hill on Friday, which had been sponsored by SF Harrison, helped to raise thousands of pounds for charity – but also celebrated the winners of the annual Mayor's Civic Awards.

The awards were hosted by former EastEnders actor turned Midlands weatherman Des Coleman. It was split into seven categories and sponsored by local companies – including Jewson, Merry Hill, Excel 2000 Windows, Midshire Business Solutions, Copthorne Hotel and Lapal House.

Chairman of the Friends of Alder Coppice, Simon Biggs, who the William Shenstone award for the environment. He has helped develop new paths through the woods and secured funding for tools for the volunteers to keep the woods tidy. Ham Dingle Primary School teaching assistant Lin Parry was runner-up.

Diane and Susan Baker won the Thomas Attwood award for education – who have worked with the learning disability team at Russells Hall Hospital teaching student nurses how to both support and provide treatment to people with a learning disability. Dudley Lighthouse Links' therapeutic teacher Rachael Harris was runner-up.

The Duncan Edwards award for sport went to Stourbridge District Youth Football League – which for 40 years has provided organised sports for more than 2,000 young girls and boys. Gornal’s Eddie Daniels, who dedicated his life to teaching martial arts before he died last year, was runner-up. His wife, Solfrid, and son, Audun, collected the award on his behalf.

Brierley Hill Market traders were the winners of the Mike Holder award for business. Roger Bannister, who has run Pressvess in Kingswinford for more than 40 years, was runner-up.

Hurst Hill Performers and Pantomime Players won the Cedric Hardwick award for arts. While Dudley Dynamics Rock and Pop Choir were runners-up in the category.

The Frank Foley award for community spirit was given to the Black Country Wellbeing Centre – which was started by Wade Cooper who turned his life around after being released from prison and wanted to give something back to the community. Eileen Fielding, who has worked on Operation Santa for the last 20 years, was runner-up.

The final award – the Mayor of Dudley's award – went to the Mary Stevens Hospice Pantomime company who have raised £45,000 for the hospice since it formed in 2017. Runner-up awards went to Dudley Mind's Growing in the Park project and All Stars Youth Club.

Councillor Millward, said: "This was a long over-due opportunity to celebrate the unsung heroes in the borough. They do incredible work and it is my pleasure to be able to shout about their work here. I was really pleased to meet them on the night and find out more about what they do.

"The money raised from the evening will go to Councillor Stanley’s charities, which he chose when he was mayor. They are Black Country Food Bank, St John Ambulance and Victim Support."

Councillor Stanley, former Mayor of Dudley, added: "I am really grateful to everyone who came on the night to raise money for these charities. They rely heavily on public donations and I am really proud to have been able to use my time as mayor to champion their work."

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