Nominations draw to a close with best community event

W29842H13''The 2013 Queen Alexandra Hospital Home Open Day on Saturday.    Crazy for swing dancers
W29842H13''The 2013 Queen Alexandra Hospital Home Open Day on Saturday. Crazy for swing dancers

NEXT WEEK’S Herald and Gazette Series will feature a special pull-out supplement with all the nominations for this year’s Community Stars Awards.

But for now, three organisations have been put forward for the category of Best Community Event.

The first nomination is the Queen Alexandra Hospital Home’s annual open day.

The national charity, which is based in Worthing, started as a military charity in 1919 and today it cares for more than 50 men and women who have served in the Armed Forces.

Tanya Sharp said: “The home holds an open day to raise vital funds and awareness for the charity and this year’s event was the most successful ever as more than 1,000 people came through the doors.

“The event brought together residents, friends, families, loyal volunteers and members of the public looking for a great afternoon and a desire to support the charity and raised just over £15,000 in three hours.”

Also nominated is the Freddysmile Children’s Cancer Charity in Lancing which hosted a family fun day in July.

Co-founder Warren Street said: “Thousands of people attended and so much effort was put into the day.

“It took six months of planning and so many hours were dedicated to it, the day saw emergency services, birds of prey, reptiles, dance shows, a car boot, children’s mini races, a mascot race, arts and craft stalls, a fun fair and so much more.

“It was such a success within the local community that people are already asking what date it will fall on next year.”

The final nomination for the category is for Worthing Lions Club’s Seafront Festival.

Marian Down said: “Worthing Lions Club is a long-established charity in the town, having been formed in 1952, and it aims to help local good causes.

“Each year, the festival provides a wide variety of free family entertainment culminating with a grand firework display on Saturday evening.

“Since the Lions have been running this community event, it has grown year by year and is now the largest single charity event in the town.

“This year, Worthing Lions Club raised in excess of £13,000 from the festival, all of which will be given to charities and causes in the Worthing area.”

There have also been a number of nominations in the Sporting Achievement category.

One of those is Worthing Pavilion Bowls Club, which enjoyed huge success this year in the Littlehampton Gazette League.

Malcolm Gilbey said: “The club had teams in all three divisions of the league and all their teams won their respective leagues. That has never been done before. Also, their A team in division one won all their matches – again this has never been achieved before.

“Also, over three years the club has built a small youth group in a sport that is not considered ‘sexy’”. They also go out to schools to promote the sport or have schools coming to their club for bowling sessions.

“This year, from this small youth group of 13, three were selected for Sussex under-25 trials, one was selected to play for the team and a young lady was picked to represent Sussex in the prestigious under-31 Amy-Rose Trophy which they lost in the semi-finals by one shot to the eventual winners.”

Also nominated is Chippingdale Cricket Club’s under-13 girls team, which has won every competition in Sussex this season, and 12-year-old dancer Amy Crouch, who recently won a prize for making up a freestyle dance clip which was posted on Facebook.