They make us proud - raising a cheer for heroes of communities

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There were moving stories of good deeds and community involvement at the annual Pride in Bedfordshire awards yesterday.

Groups and individuals were celebrated at the event, at Bedford’s Corn Exchange.

Kickstarting the evening was host Jon Moses, a finalist from Andrew Lloyd Webber;s Superstar contest who told the audience: “If it wasn’t for people like you, change wouldn’t happen.”

The awards went to

>Care in the Community, sponsored by The Harpur Trust, Pauline Capell, fundraiser for St John’s Hospice, a bereavement visitor and founder member of Good Neighbours who also is a reader for the talking newspaper for the visually impaired.

>Excellence in Education, sponsored by Costa, Harrison Dowling in his first year as a full time student in Sport at Bedford College, has achieved distinctions in every subject and won the department’s academic student of the year award and the employability award.

>Fundraiser of the Year, sponsored by the Bedford Times & Citizen, Andrew Lake, treasurer of the Bedfordshire group of Sporting Bears which has raised mor than £1,750,000 for childrens charities.

>Volunteer of the Year sponsored by BPHA, Trevor Pocock a counselling volunteer for the Roads Victims Trust. He has worked for the trust, which operates in Bedfordshire, for 12 years. and is passionate about supporting people whose lives have been devastated by road death.

>Unsung hero, sponsored by Keens Shay Keens, Valery Rose Rapley, chairwoman of the Northill and Ickwell drama group and chairwoman of the village hall committee which raises funds each year for a Christmas dinner held in the village hall for every pensioner in the two villages.

Raising the Profile of the Town, sponsored by Charles Wells, James Pharoah who brought Bedfringe to Bedford and has promoted the arts in the town.

>Courage and Kindness, sponsored by the Luton News, Sam Wiggins, who saved his father’s life after he had been taken ill at the wheel of his car and crashed into a tree. Sam performed five cycles of CPR before help arrived. His father has made a full recovery.

>Winner of Winners, sponsored by The Harpur Trust, Trevor Pocock.

The event was organised by The Bedford Times and Citizen, Luton News, Leighton Buzzard Observer, Dunstable Gazette, Biggleswade Chronicle and our sister papers.