SPORTING heroes from the local community were rewarded for their dedication, commitment and inspirational attitude at a glittering awards night.

More than a thousand people gathered at the University of Bolton Stadium to honour the winners of the Bolton Sports Awards, organised by the council’s Sport and Active Living team, a department dedicated to creating healhier communites, promoting healthy activities and improving facilities for local participants.

Guest speaker at the awards evening was Olympic sprinter-turned TV presenter Iwan Thomas, with the BBC’s Roger Johnson hosting.

Also attending was the mayor Elain Sherrington, Cllrs Linda Thomas and John Byrne, the council’s chief executive officer Tony Oakman, as well as sponsors, clubs groups and individual nominees with friends and families enjoying a three-course meal.

After performances by Theatre Dance Studio, Bolton Gym Club, and former X Factor star Emilia Ward came the prize-giving with 14 worthy individuals and groups collecting their awards.

The 2018 winners are:

Sue Taylor (Changing Lifestyle Recognition sponsored by iPro Sport)

After recovering from breast cancer Sue underwent a a quadruple heart bypass operation, which required a slow and painful recovery. Sue worked hard on her physical and mental recovery and is now inspiring others through her volunteer work.

Tri-Rivington UK (Club of the Year, sponsored by Carrs Pasties)

Renowned as an inclusive and welcoming club for participants of all standards, Tri-Rivington is a firm fixture at local sporting events and its membership, from novices to three members competing for Great Britain next year, has grown year on year.

Eddy Kavanagh (Coach of the Year, sponsored by Air Vault Trampoline Park)

Coaching wrestling at local schools, clubs, the council and Bolton Wanderers, Eddy also managed the Great Britain wrestling team at the Commonwealth Games. A tireless volunteer in the community, Eddy’s charges include Georgina Nelthorpe, who won a bronze medal at the Games on the Gold Coast.

Isabelle Hibbert (Disabled Achievement Award, sponsored by Sparq and Filmsoup)

Perhaps the night’s most determined winner, Isabelle refuses to let severe epilepsy and learning difficulties stop her taking part in many events, such as the Manchester Junior Run, IronKidz and charity runs.

Ayaz Bhuta (Disabled Sports Achiever of the Year, sponsored by Decathlon)

Wheelchair rugby Paralympian Ayaz dedicates his time to visiting schools giving talks and presentations, attending charity events to raise awareness of disability in sport and has transcended racial and cultural barriers to inspire others.

Horwich Swimming Club (Junior Sport Team Achievement, sponsored by The Emerson Group)

The community club is over-achieving by retaining its status in the Arena League Premier Division, a great achievement made possible through teamwork.

Birtenshaw School (School Commitment to PE and Sport, sponsored by Express Banners)

The school’s Sports and Activities Team ensures sport is accessible for people with different abilities and delivers high-quality PE programmes.

Bolton Hockey Club men’s first XI (Senior Sport Team of the Year, sponsored by Yusha Ninja)

Following four torrid years the men’s first team started their North West Hockey League Division Four North season with a triumphant 18-game run and scoring more than 100 goals to win the title.

WAVE Adventure (Sport and Health Iniative of the Year, sponsored by Portfolio)

The local charity provides healthy activities for young people to increase self-esteem, improve health and encourage the ability to form positive relationships.

Tim Worthington (Sport Achiever of the Year, sponsored by University of Bolton)

An inspirational mentor and role model for cyclists in Bolton, Tim balances a hectic professional career with a dedicated cycling training regime and is a winner of the National Closed Road Circuit Championships

Susan Bingham (Unsung Hero of the Year, sponsored by Renault Retail Group)

Involved with local football for 20 years, Susan has held just about every position in clubs and leagues and promotes fundraising, sponsorship, and recruitment for the benefit of countless local teams and players.

Darren Crompton (Volunteer of the Year, sponsored by Atlantic Travel)

Bolton Lads and Girls Club volunteer Darren devotes three nights each week plus weekends and is involved with promoting, recruiting and coaching girls’ football and has plans in place to establish a BLGC youth council.

Kiahna Wright (Young Volunteer of the Year, sponsored by Bolton Council)

Kiahna’s dedication, patience and encouragement as a role model has helped nearly 300 members of Aspire Dance and Stage to achieve their goals, regardless of their size.

Rasib Muhammed (Liam Chronnell Memorial Trophy Winner, sponsored by The Bolton News)

A key individual in setting up Haulgh Community Premier Boxing Club, Rasib trains boxers and arranges charity events as well as attending boxing events up and down the country. Rasib continued to dedicate his time to local sport despite tragedies in his personal life.

The Executive Cabinet Member for Culture and Sport, Cllr John Byrne, said: “The awards are an opportunity to celebrate those who work tirelessly behind the scenes to make sure that the sport and physical activity on offer in Bolton is the best of the best.

“We recognise the importance of keeping the residents of Bolton physically active and the town has some fantastic partnerships that support the development of sport from the classroom through to local communities. This would not be possible without the army of volunteers, coaches, mentors and organisers who do all this incredible work. The awards are about celebrating all of them.”