Monday, 02 August 2021

Awards double for Living Advent Calendar initiative

THE Henley Living Advent Calendar has won an award and was shortlisted for another.

THE Henley Living Advent Calendar has won an award and was shortlisted for another.

It won the business and economy and partnership and strategic working category for the South in the Towns Alive Awards and will now go on to the national final, to be announced in November.

It was also in the top three of the most attractive town initiative category of the Association of Town and City Management’s annual awards.

Julie Perigo, who chairs the Living Advent Calendar and the Henley Partnership, was presented with a certificate at the association’s awards ceremony in Lincoln last week.

She said: “This is a very important achievement for Henley. Major cities like Dublin and Birmingham and business improvement districts from cities including London and Manchester go in for these awards.

“They have much larger budgets and resources for their initiatives. As this was Henley’s first nomination for one of these types of national awards, I’m extremely proud that we ended up in the top three.”

The calendar involves performances by a range of artists at various business venues each night between December 1 and 24 and raises money for charity.

Henley Mayor Stefan Gawrysiak said: “Henley Town Council is delighted to be part of the success of the Living Advent Calendar. It’s good for attracting visitors and for local businesses and the local community.”

Ms Perigo added: “One of the best ways to tell if you’ve got something right is how many places copy you and this year Wokingham, Twyford and Windsor have all said they want to put on a Living Advent Calendar. Several other towns and cities at the awards expressed an interest in taking it up too.”

The certificate is likely to be put on display at the Visitor Information Centre in the town hall.

Meanwhile, the Henley Partnership was also commended in the Towns Alive Awards for its work with the Henley Young Partnership.

Ms Perigo said: “This is probably the biggest set of awards any market town can be nominated for and is something Henley can be very proud of. It shows the vibrancy, imagination and resilience of the town in a recession.

“I’m particularly proud that the partnership has been the driver in all this and the commitment of all those involved in establishing the Living Advent Calendar and Young Partnership is a credit to the spirit of the town.”

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