HEROES from all over Inverclyde gathered together at Greenock Town Hall on Friday night for the Tele’s fourth Community Champion Awards sponsored by Inverclyde Council, Platinum Paving and RCH Group.
The glittering ceremony honoured individuals who put their heart and soul into helping others and give their all to supporting communities across Inverclyde.
More than 200 people gathered to hear inspirational stories from finalists of all ages, and everyone joined together to celebrate the success of each of the winners.
The awards recognise people who go above and beyond to help others, through fundraising, drawing attention to important issues, volunteering or showing incredible courage.
Television and radio star Jennifer Reoch led the proceedings on the night and helped the presenters gift a total of 12 honours.
Jennifer welcomed everyone to the beautiful town hall and prepared guests for a night that would be full of incredible stories about amazing individuals.
Our editor David Goodwin added that the team at the Telegraph feel privileged to report on inspirational people, and said the night ahead would recognise people who make Inverclyde very special.
After the event, David said he was very proud to be part of the awe-inspiring evening.
He added: “These honours recognise the dedication of people who make our wee corner of Scotland very special.
“It’s been great to see individuals and teams take the well-deserved plaudits for their achievements.
“We’ve all enjoyed hearing their amazing stories.
“All of the finalists are winners in our eyes.”
Inspirational sportswoman Gillian Duffy took the Sporting Champion of the Year title.
Gillian has overcome serious health problems to become an ambassador for the women’s game.
She is set to make history by becoming the first woman president of the Scottish Schools Football Association and the youngest person ever to take on the role.
Young boxing champion Noah Waddell received a ‘highly commended’ sporting honour.
Lauren Hair was crowned winner in the Teacher of the Year category.
Lauren dedicates her life to teaching youngsters in her own dance school, Lauren Hair Dance Company, and said the win was an amazing end to a really successful time for the school.
Eva Campbell, Farrah McLaughlin and Jessica Glover all took the Little Champion of the Year award sponsored by Platinum Paving.
The three young girls were honoured for their determination and bravery.
Inverclyde Maternity Unit scooped the Health & Care Champion of the year gong.
The team were thrilled to win the honour on International Day of the Midwife.
Margaret Sneddon took the Senior Community Champion of the Year title.
The daring 92-year-old, who experienced a once-in-a-lifetime trike ride last year, said the Tele should ‘watch this space’ for what she’s going to be up to next.
Baby sensory firm Glow Bambino took the Business Champion of the Year title sponsored by Inverclyde Council, and the team at Clyde Eats were ‘highly commended’.
Jade Gilbride of Glow Bambino was lost for words but made sure she thanked all the mums and babies who support the business.
Singer songwriter and harpist Chloe Matharu won the Live Music award.
Chloe said she was ‘blown away’ by the win and said it reinforced that Inverclyde is a ‘really special place to live’.
Chris Thomson and his family took the Charity Champion of the Year honour.
Chris has been raising money in honour of his mum for many years and the family are hoping to smash the £100,000 total later this year.
Tele editor David presented the Special Recognition Award to the family of the late Carol Mountain.
Devoted Morrisons community champion Carol sadly passed away in December 2022.
Her sisters Linda Johnstone and Janet McMahon thanked the Telegraph for the award and said their sister was a ‘superstar’.
Young charity champion Skye McCabe took the Outstanding Community Spirit title.
Inspirational Skye, who has raised more than £2,500 for charity over the years, said everyone should give fundraising a try.
Taylor Kitchen received the Heart of Gold title.
Taylor has raised hundreds of pounds to buy special cuddly toys to comfort sick children who spend a lot of time in hospital.
Francis Quinn took the overall Community Champion of the Year honour sponsored by RCH Group.
Francis, known as Francie, started volunteering at Branchton Community Centre around four years ago and said he ‘just loves helping people’.