A special awards ceremony has been held to honour disabled sports men and women in the North-East.
The 13th North East Disability Awards recently took place at the Dolphin Centre in Darlington.
The awards celebrated the sporting achievements and acknowledged the work of participants; coaches and clubs throughout 2015.
Some of the award winners.
Over 240 guests from the world of sport were in attendance at the event, with over 120 individuals and clubs nominated for the ten awards on offer.
The awards up for grabs were; Team of the year, Female Personality, Male Personality, School Award, Participant Award, Service to Sport, Coach of the Year, Young Female Achiever, Young Male achiever and also Outstanding club/group award.
Male Personality award went to Iain Nairn, Captain of the England Cricket Disability team.
Iain captained his team to the first World Cup for physical disability cricket in September 2015 played in Bangladesh, and televised to 10 million people.
Iain has played for England Physical Disability team in his chosen sport for 3 years though 2015 was his first role as captain.
What shone through his nomination was not simply his and his team’s success on the international stage but also the role he plays in publishing his sport and the wider disability.
Iain was described as an ‘amazing ambassador for his sport (whose) ability to engage and involve an audience is a true gift and his humble approach to doing so is a true testament to his character and ability to inspire
The Female Personality went to Jemma Robinson for her Olympic Power lifting.
Jemma won a silver medal at the Commonwealth Federation Championships held in Vancouver.
Her silver medal performance in the power lifting discipline of the deadlift, at 105kg, represented an increase of 50% from her starting weight at the beginning of the season.
The Young Achiever awards were won by Amy Carr and Patrick Beunkenholdt.
Amy represented Great Britain for the second time in her career in the International Wheelchair and Amputee Sport World Junior Games.
She also competed for England in the Cerebral Palsy International Sports and Recreation Association World Games in Nottingham where she won silver for 100m and long jump and a gold for the 4x 100m relay.
Patrick has a visual impairment and has enjoyed his sailing boat from a young age, however, he initially thought he would always be sailing in a boat with someone else at the helm.
He competed in the North Zone Championships in September 2013 where he came first in the regatta against fully sighted sailors.
In 2015 he sailed the Traveller series and came 4th, RYA NE youth championships and came 4th, also he sailed the IOCA Optimist Nationals in Pwelli and came 101st out of 155.
In December he competed in the Euromed Championships in Malta coming 43rd out of 55 in the Bronze fleet.
Patrick took a moment to tell us what he thought about the event: “it was really good and interesting to meet other people like me”
Jean Lordon, Executive Director of Tees Valley Sport said: “In this Paralympic year it is great to share the evening with over 240 nominees and guests to celebrate the ever growing field of disability sport.
“We would like to congratulate all those who were nominated and thank our sponsors and the Tees Valley Inclusive Dance company who premièred their new dance inspired by sport, choreographed especially for the evening.”
Fred MacKenzie won the service to sport award, he is a former paralympian and is the driving force behind the Parkhead and Wansbeck Power sports club.
The event was organised by the regional County Sports Partnerships, supported by the English Federation of Disability Sport and sponsors D&P Trophies, Future Sport, House of Type, Metro Rod North East, SMILE Through Sport, Transforming Culture, Newcastle Development League, Darlington Borough Council and Rotary North East.
The Results from the awards evening are as follows:
Team of the Year – Sponsored by Rotary North East: Sunderland Deaf AFC
Female Personality – Sponsored by House of Type: Jemma Robinson
Male Personality – Sponsored by Darlington Borough Council: Iain Nairn
School Award – Sponsored by SMILE Through Sport: The Kings Academy
Participant Award – Sponsored by Newcastle Development League: Bernard Bousefield
Service to Sport – Sponsored by D&P Trophies: Fred MacKenzie
Coach of the Year – Sponsored by Metro Rod North East: Lee Fawcett
Young Female Achiever – Sponsored by Future Sport: Amy Carr
Young Male Achiever – Sponsored by Future Sport:Patrick Beukenholdt
Outstanding Club/ Group award – Sponsored by Transforming Culture: Beamish Dynamos & Special Olympics Gateshead.