Monday, 24 February 2020

Nominees for awards announced

MORE than a dozen women from the Henley area have been nominated for this year’s Sue Ryder Women of Achievement Awards.

They make up about a third of the total number of individuals and groups from across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire to be nominated.

The awards, now in their 14th year, celebrate the achievements of women in seven categories, including business, sport, community and public service.

There are also awards to recognise courage in the face of adversity, creative thinking and those who have mentored others.

The winners will be revealed at a black-tie gala dinner at Phyllis Court Club in Henley on March 13, hosted by BBC Radio Berkshire presenter Michelle Jordan.

In the business category, Rose Grimond, founder of Nettlebed Creamery, and Barb Grigor, the owner and manager of the Field Kitchen cafe in Nettlebed, are nominated.

Laura Poole, from Nettlebed, who owns dog walking business Woofits Walkies is nominated in the community category for organising a 5km walk.

Amanda Foister, who is a charity worker, a governor at Nettlebed Community School and a parish councillor, is also nominated alongside Poppy Appeal organiser Margaret Butler, volunteer Anne Jackson, who helps at community events in Nettlebed, and Andrea Chanter, who greets and supports families at the cemetery in Rotherfield Greys.

In sport, Claire McIntosh, chairman of the race committee of Henley Women’s Regatta, makes the shortlist.

Melissa Walker, a volunteer with the Street Pastors, has been nominated in the public service category.

Kitty Tait, 14, from Watlington, is in the running for the Robyn Jones Courage Award for her Orange Bakery business that she runs from her parents’ kitchen. The business has grown rapidly and is now serving customers outside the town.

In the mentor and coach of the year category, nominees include Steph Maxwell, who has been running dance classes for girls and boys at Divas and Dudes Dance Academy in Henley since 2018.

Also shortlisted is Gail Rosier, who together with the late Robina Nicholson, started the Acorn Music Theatre Company more than 30 years ago to advance the education of young people in the art of theatre, music and other performing arts.

Martina Swinburn, who is part of the welfare team at Henley Rowing Club, and Elspeth Denchfield, who is a pre-school teacher at Bix Montessori School, could also pick up the award.

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