Sporting achievements were celebrated at the Annual West Oxfordshire Sport Awards with GLL and the District Council presenting awards to the District’s top sportspeople.
Swimming made a big splash with Witney & District Swimming Club announced as the Club of the Year and their Head Coach, Chantal Clavaud, taking the Coach of the Year honour at ceremony held at the Windrush Leisure Centre in Witney.
Nicola Mellings, Chair of Witney & District Swimming Club, said: “I am proud that the efforts of our enthusiastic, dedicated and committed volunteers are being recognised with these awards. Our volunteers give a significant amount of their time and expertise to enable our family-friendly club not only to function, but to grow, develop and succeed.”
Chantal added: “This was a huge surprise. I love the sport and have been a swimmer since I was 10 years old. We spend a lot of time together as a team and this award recognises the hours we put in and the time away from home.”
The Club has 170 swimmers aged between six and 18, with 13 competing at a regional level and six in national competitions.
The Unsung Hero award went to Mick Widdows, a groundsman at Chipping Norton & District Cricket Club.
He was nominated for maintaining an excellent cricket field standard for the teams to play on, as well as carrying out maintenance work at the club all year round and in all weathers. He even opens the the bar on Fridays.
Youth Co-ordinator, Sue Powell, said: “He has been doing this for longer than I can remember and gets little thanks, but we couldn’t manage without him. Long may he continue.”
Cllr Jeanette Baker, Cabinet Member at West Oxfordshire District Council said, “I am continually amazed by the depth of sporting talent we have in the District and the wide variety of sports represented here tonight. These awards are our opportunity to recognition the achievement of so many individuals and the support given to them by others, including their clubs and volunteers who work so hard behind the scenes.”
GLL Sports Foundation Awards
More than 50 individual athletes received awards from the GLL Sports Foundation which totalled £28,500 in value. The highest individual award of £1,000 went to swimmer Callum Smart, age 17 from Charlbury, who is currently 21st in the world ranking.
Callum Smart is on the England Talent programme and hoping to be selected to swim for GB at the 2018 European Juniors in Helsinki; he would like to compete at more world championships and ultimately the Olympics.
Callum, who attends Chipping Norton School, said, “I spend 30 hours a week training in Oxford, and the financial support will help towards my weekly travel cost as well as paying for other expenses when I compete away from home. My ultimate aim is to compete at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.”
Jamie Coleshill, Regional Director for GLL, said: “It is vitally important to recognise talented athletes. For many this will be the first award they have received and for us it is fantastic to be able to invest in the local community.”
Below is a list of all the sports winners:
Callum Smart, India Mae Thompson, Max Townley, Lucy Kavanagh, Brett Massey, Jed Smithson, Lois Moseley, Lucy Millington, Katie Nutt, Alexandra Scrivener, Laura Turberville, Max Warburton, Libby Gotta, Natalia Mitchell, Sophie McPeak, Billy Wotton, Jake Williams, Devon Shadbolt, Cameron Tweedle, Sami Vaudrey, Sophie Harris, Aidan Wilkinson, Phoebe Iona Muir, Georgia Duff, Ellie Millington, Freddie Holford, Faye Godfrey, Alysha-paris Godfrey, Megan Thomas, Christian Mitchell, Ollie Stacey, Lauren Mellings, Milly Pittaway, Joshua Wilks-Hanley, Alexander Franklin, Luke Butler, Eleanor Bisp, Rowan Bisp, Amelia Leslie, Camille Duff, Lucy Gotta, Maddie Good, Eleanor Perks, Jess Miller, Reuben Wertheim, Ben Kinahan, Tom Miller, Mike Bedlington, Janette Cardy, Graham Le Good, James Birnie, Janka Penther, Chris Goodfellow and Dan Blake.