Celebrating community heroes of St Albans district

PUBLISHED: 12:00 07 May 2016

Herts Advertiser Community Awards 2016

Herts Advertiser Community Awards 2016

Archant

Don’t miss out on your chance to nominate someone who proves community spirit is alive and thriving in the St Albans district.

The Herts Advertiser Community Awards reward those people who are making a significant contribution to their community, whether as a volunteer, fundraiser or unsung local hero.

Last year’s awards were hosted by Sky Sports Formula 1 presenter David Croft at The Maltings Arts Theatre, and drew on representatives from all walks of life, coming together to highlight some remarkable achievements.

This week we are focusing on two very different categories, Lifetime Achievement and Young Achiever – the polar opposites. The winners for 2015 were:

Young Achiever (sponsored by estate agent Putterills): Eva Higgins - After receiving emergency treatment at the hospital to correct a heart condition Eva declared to her parents that she was determined to raise money for the hospital. This Manland Primary School girl participated in several fundraising events including a fun run in Battersea Park, a clothes and Pimm’s evening and collections at school helping to raise more than £4,000 pounds for Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Lifetime Achievement (sponsored by independent financial planners KDW): Sister Sheila O’Reilly - Sister Sheila has been volunteering at the Open Door Homeless Service in Bricket Road St Albans for more than 20 years. She first started volunteering to help the homeless after retiring as a primary school teacher and was one of the volunteers that operated a night shelter out of small flat in Victoria street prior to the opening of the Open Door Charity in 1992.

She can be found most Sundays and occasional Tuesdays at the centre as part of her role is to organise the rota for a group of volunteers who cook and serve the evening meal to people staying overnight. For all the caring and selfless work Sister Shelia does with Open Door, she truly has made and continues to make such a vast difference in people’s lives.

The headline sponsor for this year’s awards is once again The Maltings Shopping Centre, and manager Phil Corrigan said: “The Maltings is proud to be sponsoring the Herts Advertiser Community Awards and The Maltings Community Hero Category for the second year running.

“Community Heroes are all around us and the exceptional contributions they make to improve life in St Albans are all too often overlooked. They are the unseen fabric binding our community together. Here at the Maltings we believe their contribution deserves recognition, and that their dedication should be celebrated.

“As such, we are delighted to be a part of the Herts Advertiser Community Awards once again, and we hope that their stories will inspire others.”

Deadline for entries is Thursday July 21 and to enter simply visit http://communityawards.hertsad.co.uk/

The Awards ceremony this year will take place Tuesday September 6 at the Malting Arts Theatre.

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CountryPhile

Recently we, as a family (minus two of the kids), visited The Lodge RSPB reserve in Sandy, Bedfordshire. I had never been before, which is perhaps amiss of me as a birdwatcher as it is the headquarters of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds or RSPB and only 45 minutes drive from home.

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