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​Mansfield's sportspeople honoured at glittering ceremony

12th December 2016
Sport, Mansfield

Mansfield's sportspeople honoured at glittering ceremony

Mansfield celebrated another great year for sport at the 2016 Sports Recognition Awards last week. 

The annual ceremony, organised by Mansfield District Council in association with The Armchair Club and the Chad, recognised the district’s sporting greats, including the best teams, coaches, volunteers, sportsmen and sports women.

Staged at the Civic Quarter, Civic Centre, Chesterfield Road South, the awards attracted 41 nominations across ten categories. 

There were also two additional awards; the Mayor’s Special Achievement Award, which recognises the work of an individual in promoting sport within the district and the Ian Bagshaw Memorial Award in memory of Water Meadows manager Ian Bagshaw, who lost his life to leukaemia in May 2014, aged 57.

The winners were:

Coach of the Year (sponsored by Collins Wealth Management) - Pauline Gourley (swimming)

Pauline is the assistant swim squad coach for the Nova Centurion Swimming Club (Mansfield squad). She is also the lead coach for ASA Regional Development programme and has placed swimmers on the England Talent Programmes Phase and ASA Regional Development programme.

She has coached swimmers to gold, silver and bronze medal places at the East Midlands Regional Championships 2016 and coached swimmers to medals at the ASA Nationals in August 2016.

Pauline was nominated by UK Sport and Amateur Swimming Association for the Women into High Performance Coaching 2016 - 2017 (one of only three female swimming coaches on the programme in the country).

She was selected by British Swimming for the National Junior Camp in Aberdeen as a CPD coach and was one of twelve coaches in the country and one of only three females to be selected for this camp.

Volunteer of the Year (sponsored by Pinders Opticians) - Heather Bacon (Mansfield Rugby Union Football Club)

Heather is one of the founding volunteers of the Mansfield Rugby Club U11 girls team. She gives up hours of her own time to volunteer and coach the players every Friday evening and the same every Sunday with the U7 mixed tag team.

Heather’s sessions bridge the gap between tag rugby and the move into full contact. She teaches players core skills and values of rugby whilst also working with primary school children to promote school club links.

Being a Young Rugby Ambassador she also organised a summer school programme for the charity Spectrum WASP. This involved designing, publicising and delivering a series of basketball / rugby mash up sessions for a group of autistic children.

Junior Sportsperson of the Year (sponsored by Hopkins Solicitors) - Elliot Clogg (swimming)

Elliot qualified for the 2016 European Juniors Championships in Hungary and made his second international appearance for Great Britain. He was part of the bronze medal winning 4 x 100m mixed medley relay team at the championships in Hungary in July, with Elliot swimming the backstroke leg.

Elliot then swam at this year's British Summer Nationals where he won four individual gold medals in 50m, 100m and 200m back and 100m free and also won gold in the City of Sheffield four x 200m free relay team.

Elliot is the current junior short course (25m pool) record holder on the 50m, 100m and 200m backstroke and 100m freestyle and has equalled the 16 years boys 50m backstroke long course (50m) record.

He is also the 100m free English 16 years long course record holder (50m pool) with a time that currently makes him the only English 16 year old to have swam in under 51 seconds.

Junior Team of the Year (sponsored by Hall-Fast Industrial Supplies Ltd) - Joseph Whitaker School Boys U13 Cricket Team

The U13 Joseph Whitaker cricket team was made up of mostly year eight with a few Year seven pupils. They competed in a range of ‘Chance to Shine’ cricket competitions, which aimed to develop all round cricket players.

They became indoor county champions in February 2016 going unbeaten throughout the tournament which was run by Notts County Cricket Club. This meant that they qualified to the midlands regional final where the team played schools from Leicester, Northants, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire and Oxfordshire. In the final they played Canterbury Academy and had to chase down 79 runs managing to knock off this total with ten balls to spare and so became the school’s first National Sporting Champions.

The Roger Copestake Mayor’s Special Achievement Award  (sponsored by Linney Group) - Ben and Tom Birchall (Sidecar Racing)

Ben and Tom Birchall have seen multiple achievements this year in sidecar racing including their fourth career title at the Isle of Man in the Sure Sidecar TT2 (Tourist Trophy) race in June. They also commanded the lead in the race of 38.784 seconds.

By the end of the season they secured the World F2 title with a race to spare and the British sidecar cup, then headed the qualifying charts, won every race and broke the lap record at every circuit in the F2 trophy class.

The Maurice Brackenbury Team of the Year Award (sponsored by Adkin Sinclair) - Sherwood Wolf Hunt Rugby League Team

For the second year running, Sherwood Wolf Hunt Rugby League team have taken take home two lots of silverware in the Midlands Premier League.

During the season the team competed in the Nottinghamshire City versus county shield competition and despite several tough games, defeated Nottingham Outlaws to run out as back to back champions.

Aside from this, the Wolf Hunt managed to win through the play offs to get themselves into the midlands finals day, where they came up against much fancied Leamington Royals.

Off the back of these performances, no less than six members of the Wolf Hunt team received representative honours for the midlands regional side, as well as Scotland under 19s and Sweden Rugby League.

Junior Disabled Sportsperson of the Year (sponsored by Mansfield District Leisure Trust) - Ben Foulston (swimming)

Ben swims for Nova Centurion Swimming Club, Mansfield and is also on the British Para-Swimming world class podium potential programme.

He trains 14 hours a week covering on average 40,000 meters.

Ben is currently ranked number three in Britain for his Paralympic 400m freestyle event and listed as 21st by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) for world rankings.

Ben’s achievements are as follows: ASA Midland Short Course Championships, three silver medals and one bronze in open age and on British Para-Swimming Points (BPSP); National Para-Swimming Championships per age group and classification retaining all titles winning five gold medals; School games achieving one gold and two silvers.

Junior Sports Leader of the Year (sponsored by Belvoir Lettings) - Lauren King (Manor Academy)

Lauren has been a member of the Mansfield Leadership Academy since 2014 and continues to provide support to many Mansfield schools competitions and events. Since graduating the Leadership Academy in 2014 Lauren has become a mentor to her peers and younger members of the Leadership Academy. She is always willing to help and volunteer at both her school and district sporting events.

Lauren has recently been nominated to represent Mansfield on a County Coaching Leadership Academy, which is an opportunity to develop her skills further and meet likeminded leaders from across the county.

In addition to this Lauren also volunteers at 2nd Mansfield Scout Group as an explorer. This involves fundraising events, working in the church kitchen, day trips and residential trips.  Lauren leads a Beaver Group every Friday evening providing fun games and activities for the young members.

Lauren is a very confident leader who is approachable and willing to help at every opportunity.  She provides vital support to many groups within the district.

Ian Bagshaw Memorial Award (sponsored by SP Fabrications Ltd) - Liz Weston MBE (swimming)

Liz joined Sherwood Swimming Club about 15 years ago due to her children taking up swimming and joined the committee.

Over the years Liz has volunteered and contributed at least three times a week to Sherwood Swimming Club and over the years has had different roles.

Some of the roles Liz has had are minutes secretary, trained to be a timekeeper, helped at on the poolside at swimming galas and more recently is the Swim 21 Accreditation Officer and still takes the subs on the door two evenings per week.

Liz also helps at the Robin Hood swimming open meetings at Ponds Forge, Sheffield.

Liz has been regularly praised by the Sherwood Swimming Club for the help and support she gives to ensure that galas, swimming competitions and training nights are successful.

All of this work Liz puts in is in her own time away from her day job as the curator at Mansfield Museum and in 2014 she received her MBE for services to heritage and the community.

Club of the Year (sponsored by Fidler and Pepper) - River Maun Table Tennis Club

River Maun Recreation Centre's table tennis club was started in 2014 as a community based club but has exceeded expectations by serving a purpose of providing a training centre for all players around the Mansfield area.

In its second year the club entered into the Mansfield table tennis league and won the silver cup. It is now striving to gain premier club status.

Disabled Sportsperson of the Year (sponsored by Tyler Bros (Sutton) Ltd) - Ollie Hynd MBE (swimming)

Ollie has had quite an impressive year. Firstly by winning four medals at the IPC European Championships in Portugal taking golds in the S8 400m freestyle, SM8 200m individual medley, S8 100m backstroke and silver in the S8 100m freestyle.

In Sheffield at the British Summer Championships in July, Ollie warmed up for the Paralympics by smashing his own world record in the S8 400m freestyle.

Ollie had a magnificent Paralympics culminating in him becoming the leading male medal winner for the

British swimming team.

Taking Great Britain’s first gold in the swimming pool winning the S8 400m freestyle in a new world record. He then took silver in the S8 100m backstroke in a new British record and then won a gold in the SM8 200m individual medley on the final day of the Paralympics in a new world record.

Ollie now holds the Paralympic, World, European and Commonwealth title for the men’s SM8 200m individual medley as well as the Paralympic, World, European titles for the S8 400m freestyle. He also holds both world records for both events.

Sportsperson of the Year (sponsored by The Schools Advisory Service) - Ella Hughes (athletics)

Ella (pictured) has had a challenging year moving from school to Cambridge University and has successfully managed to excel both academically and at cross country.

Ella established herself into the university cross country team and earned a full blue for representing the university at the annual match against Oxford being a scorer in the winning team.

During the cross country season, Ella won the Nottinghamshire County under 20 championship by a huge margin and then went on to win the Midland Cross Country Championships.

This earned Ella her first call up to run for England at Rotselaar in Belgium in the lotto cup where she finished third.

Ella is working hard this winter to try and gain a place in the Great Britain team to represent Great Britain at the World Cross Country Championships which takes place in Kampala, Uganda in March 2017.

Commenting on the 2016 Sports Recognition Awards, Portfolio Holder for the Environment at Mansfield District Council, Cllr Andrew Tristram said: "Mansfield is deservedly proud of its athletes, teams, coaches and volunteers, who have made 2016 yet another memorable sporting year.

"The sportsmen and sportswomen are competing at a very high level, putting Mansfield on the map, both nationally and internationally. I would like to celebrate all our winners and thank them for all their outstanding contributions to sport in the district."

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