Winners of Comet Community Awards 2014 revealed

Young Achiever winners (left to right) Emma Casey, Morgan Simpson, Tae Pullin, Gabz Gardiner and Lau

Young Achiever winners (left to right) Emma Casey, Morgan Simpson, Tae Pullin, Gabz Gardiner and Lauren Joyce with sponsor The Altro Flooring Group's Iain Hutchinson (far left) and host David Croft (far right) - Credit: Archant

This year’s Comet Community Awards was held on Friday when the winners of 12 categories were revealed.

Stevenage deputy mayor Sherma Batson presents the Service to the Community award to Susan Williams,

Stevenage deputy mayor Sherma Batson presents the Service to the Community award to Susan Williams, alongside host David Croft - Credit: Archant

Nominees, business sponsors and dignitaries from across Comet country attended the annual event, which took place at the Icknield Centre in Letchworth GC.

Lifetime Achievement winner Sue Reeve (centre) with (left to right) sponsor Morrison Utility Service

Lifetime Achievement winner Sue Reeve (centre) with (left to right) sponsor Morrison Utility Services' Tracey Fox, finalists Joanna Coker and Roberta Meldrum, and host David Croft - Credit: Archant

Sky Sports’ Formula One commentator David Croft hosted the evening with performances from singers Gabz and Bethany Huckle.

A charity raffle was also held, raising more than £600 for the Comet’s Charity of the Year – Macmillan Cancer Support.

Awards were presented in recognition of those who have made a positive contribution to their surrounding community after judging took place at the Comet’s offices in Stevenage.


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The night began with the Young Achiever category – where for the first time ever all six nominees won the award.

Susan Williams won both the Service to the Community and Charity Champions awards for fundraising work which saw a new renal health research centre open in February.

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The centre, based at Stevenage’s Lister Hospital, bears the name of her son Lee Haynes – who died of kidney failure in 2005.

She said: “Anyone could do what I have done if they have the right people behind them. You have to be determined – I won’t let people say no to me. When you lose a child, it’s different to losing a parent. I just wanted to do something to help.

“I’m so delighted and feel truly honoured. It was wonderful being able to open the centre and these awards really are the cherry on the cake.”

Jackie Nealon – founder of Jackie’s Drop-In, a centre for adults with learning difficulties in Letchworth GC – was presented with the Valiant Volunteer award.

She said: “I’m very grateful to all the people who nominated me for this award. My team and I had to fight for two years to find a building to house this project and we hope, someday in the future, to open a second site. We started with just six or seven users and we have now grown to provide activities for more than 100 people. Thank you.”

The night culminated with the Lifetime Achievement award, which was presented to Sue Reeve.

The chief executive officer of Carers in Hertfordshire will retire next month – 19 years after her dream to set up a charity to support carers became a reality – and will be replaced by Michele Stokes.

Pictures from the night will be available via www.myphotos24.co.uk

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