AWARDS which recognise inspirational women across Bolton and the North-west are being extended to the rest of the country and the rest of the world for 2021.

In the first week of opening for nominations, the She Inspires Awards have received more than 120 nominations including from as far afield as Australia.

The seventh annual awards are being held at Whites Hotel on November 25. They were originally started by Gulnaz Brennan through the Women in Neighbourhoods’ movement to honour women across the borough in every area of life.

They have grown each year although last year had to be held virtually because of the pandemic and were staged at the University of Bolton.

Then the awards were watched in more than 50 countries with over 3,000 views as Strictly Come Dancing winner Kelvin Fletcher presented the event.

High-profile women speakers included Baroness Trish Morris and Baroness Sayeeda Warsi.

This year’s event promises to be equally prestigious but with six of the 18 categories now opened up nationally and globally - the Culture Champion. Rising Star and Lifetime Achievement awards among them.

Last year, the North West Woman of the Year, chosen by category winners, was Bolton’s Jan O’Brien, a dedicated Macmillan Cancer Support volunteer and cancer survivor.

Gay Wharton, former Bolton Mayoress, who died in a road traffic collision, was also posthumously honoured with the Girl Up Award which recognises exceptional support for other women. This year it will again be awarded by judges in Gay’s name.

Her husband Stephen Wharton said: “Gay would have been extremely proud to receive the award, as indeed I was.”

Mrs Brennan added: “We cannot wait to celebrate inspiring women of our town and elsewhere, highlighting stories of achievement, compassion and courage.”

Award judges will include Prof George Holmes, President and Vice Chancellor of the University of Bolton.

He said: “These awards celebrate the achievements of women from all walks of life in our diverse and vibrant community. They focus on truly inspirational stories of unsung heroes, community champions and women who have gone above and beyond.

“I would urge people to get involved and start submitting nominations as soon as possible.”

To nominate visit