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Sporting heroes win awards

Mansfield has celebrated another great year for sport at the 2018 Sports Recognition Awards with top para swimmer, turned para canoeist Charlotte Henshaw taking two of the main titles.

The awards, organised by Mansfield District Council, in association with the Armchair Club and the Chad, were presented at a ceremony at the Civic Quarter on Monday 10 December where Charlotte was presented with both the Barry Gibson Disabled Sportsperson of the Year award and the top Sport Person of the Year title.

The Mansfield Paralympian swimmer has already risen to the top of her new sport, picking up a world champion title in the past year, after switching to canoeing just 18 months ago following a successful career as a swimmer.

As well as taking the world KL2 kayak sprint champion in Portugal in August, Charlotte also took a world bronze medal in the va’a category. She also won silvers in the KL2 category in Para World Cup in Hungary and ICU European Championships in Serbia, and now has her sights firmly set on the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics.

Cllr Andrew Tristram, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Wellbeing at Mansfield District Council, said: “Congratulations to Charlotte for winning these awards. What a great ambassador for Mansfield’s sporting success she is. I am sure we’ll be seeing her on the winners’ podium many more times in her new sport.

“These awards are such a good way to celebrate this district’s sporting glories including, very often, its unsung heroes who do so much behind the scenes to ensure people here can access and enjoy a variety of sporting activities.”

The awards had more than 40 nominations and this year saw three new categories.

They included the Roger Copestake Award for the Mayor’s Special Achievement (sponsored by the Linney Group), which recognises work in promoting sport within the district. It was awarded to sidecar racing champions Ben and Tom Birchall.

Another new award was the Ian Bagshaw Memorial Award, presented in memory of Water Meadows manager Ian Bagshaw, who lost his life to leukaemia in 2014, aged 57. It was awarded to Roy Ross who has volunteered as a coach, team manager and administrator for the Nova Centurion Swimming Club squad in Mansfield for more than 20 years.

There was also a Special Recognition Award which this year went to Mark Hemingray for 25 years’ service to Mansfield Town Football In the Community.

Full list of winners 

  • Sportsperson of the Year: Charlotte Henshaw, presented by Gareth Childs, Director of Education Mutual.
  • Barry Gibson Disabled Sportsperson of the Year: Charlotte Henshaw, presented by Mike Collins, representing Tyler Bros (Sutton) Ltd and Barbara Gibson.
  • Junior Sportsperson of the Year: Joshua Walker (taekwondo), presented by Martyn Knox, Managing Partner of Hopkins Solicitors.
  • Junior Team of the Year: (joint winners) Mansfield Rugby Club U15 Girls Team, and Mansfield Harriers U13 Girls Track and Field Team, presented by Malcolm Hall, Managing Director of Hall Fast Industrial Supplies.
  • Junior Disabled Sportsperson of the Year: Isla Howe (swimming), presented by Geoff Waller, Chairman of Mansfield District Leisure Trust.
  • Junior Sports Leader of the Year: Anais Johnson (Samworth Church Academy), presented by Nick Didlick, of Belvoir Lettings.
  • Roger Copestake Mayor’s Special Achievement Award: Ben and Tom Birchall (sidecar motorcyle racing), presented by Miles Linney, Julia Copestake and Ben and Grace Copestake.
  • Special Recognition Award: Mark Hemingray, of Mansfield Town Football in the Community, presented by John Sankey MBE, Patron of the Armchair Club’s Foundation Trust.
  • Ian Bagshaw Memorial Award: Roy Ross (Nova Centurion Swimming Club), presented by Mary and Ashleen Bagshaw.
  • Club of the year: North Notts Hockey Club, presented by Joanne Godson, of Fiddler and Pepper.
  • Maurice Brackenbury Team of the Year:  Mansfield Senior Reds Over 50 Walking Football Team, presented by Chris Adkin, of Adkin Sinclair.
  • Coach of the Year: Richard Massey (athletics), presented by Mike Collins, of Collins Wealth Management.
  • Volunteer of the Year: Sarah Bradbury (running), presented by Hannah Shooter and Martine Lilleyman, of Pinders Opticians.