Finalists selected for St Albans Mayor’s Pride Awards

The Mayor of St Albans Cllr Annie Brewster with singer-songwriter Gabz

The Mayor of St Albans Cllr Annie Brewster with singer-songwriter Gabz - Credit: Archant

The finalists for this year’s Mayor’s Pride Awards have been whittled down after judges received the highest ever number of entries.

Among those who have been shortlisted for the accolade, which celebrates local people and groups who have gone the extra mile for others, include Highfield Park Trust, Earthworks St Albans and organiser of St Albans Film Festival Leoni Kibbey.

On Thursday, October 24, the winners will be crowned at a special ceremony at the Alban Arena and receive their gong from the likes of Apprentice finalist Luisa Zissman, founder of Grove House Hospice, Mary Groves, and the High Sheriff of Hertfordshire.

Entertainment will also be provided by singer-songwriter and Britain’s Got Talent finalist Gabz, The Trestle Arts Base, Rock Choir and pianist Julian Trevelyan.

The Mayor of St Albans, Cllr Annie Brewster, said: “I am thrilled by the number of nominations we have received and both humbled and inspired by the stories being told about remarkable people in St Albans district.

“The judging panel will definitely have a tough challenge selecting the actual winners. Whether you are nominees or not, you are most welcome to join us at the glamorous awards ceremony on October 4, just book your place online or by telephone.”

The annual recognition scheme is run by St Albans district council in association with the Herts Advertiser, St Albans District Centre for Voluntary Service (CVS) and Radio Verulam 92.6 FM.

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While the event is free to attend, seats must be reserved in advance by calling 01727 844488 or visiting

The full list of finalists are as follows:

Community Champion of the Year

*Janet Audley Charles – Janet runs Old London Road Pre-School which promotes a supportive and loving community atmosphere.

*Alison Bainbridge – Alison combines running her own business and cancer charity shop Raindrops on Roses which sells local arts and crafts.

*Sally Tyers – Sally started ‘Herts Postnatal Illness Support’ after suffering from the illness herself. She is constantly thinking of new ways to support women with post-natal depression and their families.

Cultural Innovation Award

*Leoni Kibbey – Leoni organised the St Albans Film Festival.

*St Albans Girls School - STAGS in Colours evening promoted diversity and acceptance of different cultures.

*St Albans International Organ Festival - International musicians played during the festival while local volunteers helped run the event.

Young Person of Distinction

*Michael Albon – Michael commits a lot of time to various voluntary roles, including the scouts, ReachOut Plus, Waterways and Enable.

*Cerys Falvey - Cerys has played a key part in St Albans Youth Council.

*Miriam Quinn – Miriam is a student at Sir John Lawes School who is an active volunteer in the wider community and for charities like Oxfam.

*Nick Sutton – As Vice-Chair of the St Albans Youth Council, Nick has highlighted the need for affordable public transport and commissioned a report on mental health provision for young people.

Community Project of the Year

*Highfield Park Trust - Hither Wood Project. The project encouraged people from different parts of the community to plant trees and create new woodland.

*2:67 Project - Love Harpenden. The project involved young people promoting random acts of kindness in the community.

*St Albans Youth Council - Mental Health Project. The project acknowledged the mental health problems experienced by local young people and helped put in place services to support them.

Community Oriented Business of the Year

*Golden Giving - Provides a free website for charities to receive donations online.

*Harpenden Building Society - Supports local people, events and charities.

*Phillips Funeral Service – Provides a bereavement service and works with medical professionals and the clergy to provide support to the community.

Environmental Champion of the Year

*The Waffle House - Supports local producers and green charities.

*Tom Short – A secondary school teacher who runs an urban farm at his school and teaches children about food sources. Tom also looks after the farm at weekends and engages and promotes recycling to the pupils.

*Transition St Albans – The organisation promotes energy saving and raises awareness of the importance of being environmentally friendly.

Voluntary Sector Award

*Sandra Ashley - Sandra volunteers for the Hertfordshire Practical Parenting Programme providing support to young people and their families.

*Keith Faulkner of Grace Muriel House – Keith set up the voluntary care home and continues to run it as a volunteer.

*Mary Hudson – The 80-year-old has volunteered with Home-Start for 11 years. She supports local families and children, is a foster mother and also volunteers at Oxfam.

Inclusive Communities Award

*Earthworks St Albans - Gives young people with learning difficulties or mental health problems the chance to gain work experience and skills through horticulture.

*Ann Scorer – Ann created the St Albans Interfaith Group after 9/11. The group aims to increase understanding and respect between women of different faiths and backgrounds.

*Wheathampstead Parish Council - Works to create community events that all of the village can get involved with.

Ian Woods – Ian gives disabled young people the opportunity to get involved with sport.