The evening started with a welcome and introduction from Helen Emmerson, England Netball North East Regional Manager, before Regional Chairperson Liz Barton-Jones began the presentation of awards to our regional winners.
The first Goalden Globe award of the evening was for the North East Grassroots Coach, an award which recognises a volunteer who has coached for at least three years. The winner of this award was Jolene Byers from Ponteland Netball Club. Jolene has been volunteering and coaching for a number of years, recruiting and retaining other volunteers along the way.
Second up was the Grassroots Officials Award, given to someone who has shown dedication to officiating matches for a minimum of three years. Pat Percy was this year’s winner, having worked extremely hard with Oaksway Netball Club, Team Northumbria NSL and the universities. Pat also volunteered at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and is a well-respected and recognised figure in the North East.
Our next award was the Muriel McNally award, one that is presented to someone who has made a significant contribution to grassroots netball in the last 10 years. This year’s winner was Barbara Brown, who has volunteered tirelessly for Oaksway Netball Club and the North East region for a number of years.
The fourth award of the evening was the Mary Bulloch Administrator award; an award which is given to an administrator who has made a significant contribution to netball for at least three years. The winner this year was Lee McFarlane of Durham Palatinate’s Netball Club. Lee has worked extremely hard for the club, and has increased the membership from 40 to more than 100 in the last 12 months.
It is not just volunteers involved in club netball who are recognised at the Goalden Globe Awards. Our Teacher Award is presented to someone who has been outstanding in their delivery of netball in an educational environment and the winner this year was Laura Street of Bede Academy. Laura works extremely hard to ensure that the girls at Bede Academy have as many opportunities to play netball as possible.
The Young Volunteer award is given to someone under the age of 25 who has shown dedication to netball for at least three years. The winner of the North East Young Volunteer was Emily McClintock, who regularly umpires at the Tyne and Wear league, travelled to Disneyland Paris as a volunteer with England Netball as well as regularly supporting the north east region with events which they host. Emily has also recently surpassed 400 hours as a volunteer on the Pass on Your Passion scheme.
Our seventh award of the evening was for the Outstanding Club of the year. This award went to Wearside Wildcats, a north east Premier League for Sport club and a club that provides netball for women (and girls!) of all ages in the Sunderland area.
Our final Goalden Globe award was the Unsung Hero award. This award was presented to the “Beacon Twins” Jacqi Holford and Val Reynolds, in recognition of the work which they put into running their club, Beacon. Val and Jacqi have volunteered for the club for a number of years, impacting on a large number of players’ lives both on and off the court.
In the North East, we have a regional award which recognises someone who has worked extremely hard in ensuring that netball is delivered effectively and efficiently across the region. This year the award, presented in honour of the late Lily McGurk, was given to Liz Wisniewski; an outstanding and well-respected volunteer who has been involve in netball in the region for a number of years. Liz has worked tirelessly to ensure that competitions run to all regulations and guidelines and has recently moved the Regional League to a central venue of Sport Central, something which has proved very popular amongst those teams taking part.
We would like to say a huge thank you to all of our regional volunteers, nominees and winners – without whom we could not deliver netball to the standard which we do in the region. Thank you to everyone who came to support us, and to those who supported the raffle which saw us raise £93.10 for Cancer Research UK, England Netball’s partner charity.
Good luck to all of our regional winners who will now go through to the national awards event in September.