Stars of Suffolk 2017 is launched - and this is how you can nominate someone
PUBLISHED: 18:28 19 April 2017 | UPDATED: 08:41 20 April 2017
The search is on to find this year’s Stars of Suffolk - the ordinary people who do extraordinary things in our county.
It may be someone who has defied overwhelming odds, shown extreme bravery and courage, a dedicated police officer, or someone who has simply made a profound difference to the lives of others.
These are the unsung heroes who make Suffolk great - and the awards, supported by the East Anglian Daily Times and Ipswich Star - will celebrate what they do.
This year’s event was launched at Hintlesham Hall today, and nominations are now being sought.
There are more than a dozen categories, and the winners will be announced at a glittering awards ceremony at Trinity Park in November.
Last year’s overall winner was the Teapot Project, based in Ipswich, which intercepts perfectly edible food from shops and restaurants, and re-distributes it to those in need.
Taking the special recognition award was Cheryl Thayer, whose hard work and dedication saw the opening of the £4.7million Woolverstone Macmillan Cancer Centre at Ipswich Hospital.
The awards were launched by Mick Parker, of Parker Communications, 10 years ago to honour Suffolk’s bravest, most dedicated and caring individuals.
Mr Parker said: “We are really excited again this year, and we know there are already some great nominations being lined up.
“It’s an evening that will live long in the memory of many people. It recognises real heroes who do marvellous things, even though they don’t think they do marvellous things.
“This is about the community, the real people of Suffolk, and what makes Suffolk great.”
Among the most inspirational tales from last year’s awards was of a woman called Shirley - who took the Outstanding Bravery award. The 74-year-old grandmother stopped a racist attack on a bus in which a man claimed he was going to shoot an Asian passenger. “I couldn’t sit and watch him get hurt, or even killed. I would do it again if I had to,” she said.
Mandy Talbot won the Carer of the Year award for the time she takes to looking after her disabled daughter Zoe and her parents.
Flagship Housing Group is the main event sponsor, while Servest, Suffolk County Council, BBC Radio Suffolk, Cipher Crystal, Ipswich Hospital, Hudson Signs, Fred Olsen, Elmy Cycles, Omega ingredients, East of England Co-op, Ipswich Town Football Club and Concertus will also sponsor the event.
Nominations can be made over the next five months using the form either online or printed in the newspaper. Judges will draw up a shortlist in each category.
All winners will receive a gong and a special prize relevant to the individual.
Nominations close on Friday, October 13, with the winners to be announced at a ceremony at Trinity Park on Thursday, November 9.