A CELEBRATION of local amateur sport took place last night at the annual Lancashire Telegraph Grass Roots Heroes Awards.
Talented teams and individuals, dedicated coaches and loyal servants of sport were honoured at the event held at Mytton Fold Hotel in Langho.
Former Blackburn Rovers and Scotland star, Kevin Gallacher, ex-Burnley captain Graham Alexander and John Stanworth who was wicketkeeper at Lancashire and now Academy director at Old Trafford were among the guests.
The awards, now in their second year, were once again sponsored and supported by United Utilities where Simon Chadwick, Director for Wastewater Operations in North West, handed out the honours.
There were 10 categories up for grabs and among the winners were talented young swimmer Katie Rilett-Young, who was named young sports personality of the year, while 80-year-old Tom Baron, a national veteran tennis champion, won the senior sports personality of the year award.
Roll of honour
Junior team of the Year - winner: Burnley Tornados American football team; finalists: Darwen Vale Basketball team, Rossendale Rugby Club Colts
Senior Team of the Year - winner: Mill Hill Football Club; finalists: Blackburn Northern Tennis Club, Rossendale Raptors Basketball Club
Coach of the Year - winner: Alf Love (Alf’s Black Belt Academy); finalists: James Fry (Rossendale Raptors), Sarah Thompson (Ribble Valley Netball Club)
Unsung Hero - winner: Darren Wright (Burnley Community Trust); finalists: Faz Dalal (Blackburn United), Ray Rydell (Fit2XL Boxing Club)
Community Club of the Year - winner: Blackburn and Darwen Police Amateur Boxing Club; finalists: Alf’s Black Belt Academy, East Lancs Rangers Disability Football Team
People’s Choice - winners: St Francis Primary School, Blackburn football team; finalists: Harry Warburton (football referee), Alan Smith (football), Bethany Widdup (skiing), Ossie St Mary’s Football Club
Spirit of Sport - winners: Thomas Sutton (Wilpshire Wanderers); finalists: Mohammed Patel (football referee), Rossendale Special Olympic Ski team
Lifetime Achievement - winner: Barbara Jones (swimming); finalists: Eddie Hart (cricket), Derek Carter (cricket)
Junior Sports Personality of the Year - winner: Katie Rilett-Young (swimming); finalists: Connor Byrne (climbing), Natalya Irvine (athletics)
Senior Sports Personality of the Year - winner: Tom Baron (tennis); finalists: Chloe Love (kick boxing), Karen Driver (swimming).