UNSUNG heroes from across the borough have been honoured for their dedication and hard-work to their communities at this year's Mayor's Civic Awards.

The Mayor of Dudley presented awards to borough stars on Friday (April 4) at the Copthorne Hotel at a glitzy awards ceremony which was this year sponsored by Cougar Monitoring.

FAST Aid Black Country, a group of volunteers who attend 999 calls received by the ambulance service and provide care until professional paramedics arrive, won the coveted Mayor’s award, after receiving the most online public votes.

Runners-up - John Deane from the Royal Air Force Association, Paul Gough from Priory Boxing Club, and members of Apni Zaroorat Community Network based in Lye were also presented with glass awards after being nominated by the Mayor.

Mr Gough also received the Chief Executive’s Love Your Community award for his efforts in promoting sport in the community.

Winnie and Jack Garbett, both 85, from Wollescote, walked away with the Frank Foley award for community spirit for their work volunteering at Wollescote Community Centre for the past 40 years.

The runner-up award went to Sally Johnson, a volunteer for over 20 years who has helped to raise £300,000 for a new community centre on Dudley's Priory estate.

The Cedric Hardwicke award for arts was won by seasoned panto performer Mike Bradley, who has been starring in theatre productions across the borough for more than 50 years - including many for The Young Ones at Netherton Arts Centre.

Fusion Rock Choir, made up of volunteers at Jessons Church of England Primary School, won the runner-up category.

The Thomas Attwood award for education went to Gill Cartwright, headteacher at Old Park School, for her work in lifting the Quarry Bank school from special measures to outstanding.

Andy Griffiths, headteacher at Ellowes Hall School, Lower Gornal, received the runner-up award for his work in leading the school to an 80 per cent pass rate in GCSEs A to C.

Dedicated Stourbridge litter picker Dave Colley, a volunteer with and co-founder of Tidy Stourbridge, was awarded the William Shenstone award for environment. The runner-up award went to Paul Greenway, chairman of Cotwall End Nature Reserve.

The Rotary Club of Halesowen and Rowley Regis picked up the Duncan Edwards award for sport after raising thousands of pounds for charity from their Great Black Country Run through Halesowen last year.

The runner-up award went to Caroline Tarnowski, a sixth form student at Windsor High School, Halesowen, who has represented England and Europe in the under 17s netball.

Dudley-based manufacturing firm Alan Nuttall won the Mike Holder award for business.
Kenneth Jones picked up the runner up award after running Handyman Stores in Dudley for more than 30 years.

Councillor Alan Finch, Mayor of Dudley, said: “It was a fantastic night and such an honour and a privilege to meet the people who make our communities tick. I would like to congratulate all our community heroes for the work they do across the borough, helping to make Dudley borough a great place to live.”