Community Awards

2020 Community Champion Awards

What a year 2020 has been…! However, Bembridge is fortunate to have a number of people living in the village who give more than they take and these awards reflect, in a small way, the recognition and appreciation that the residents feel towards them.   This year we had numerous nominations in each category and the decisions on the winners was difficult and thought provoking. Congratulations to all those nominated and we are sorry that not all could be winners.   This year’s winners were presented by Cllr Sheila Weedall with awards designed by Paul Critchley of Sculpture Glass and a certificate at the War Memorial Gardens or where was convenient to the recipient.

Champion Young Person

Making calls to take orders may seem a simple thing to do but during lockdown this was a lifeline to numerous residents in Bembridge and sometimes it was the only person they spoke to in the day or week!  It is a special person who goes out of their way to help others during lockdown in a calm and happy manner and then purchases and delivers chocolates to those self-isolating. 

Award goes to Daisy Warburton

Champion Neighbour/Friend

Collecting prescriptions and shopping during both lockdowns has helped numerous residents who would have struggled without this person.  Many are grateful for the kindness and hard work, and always with a smile.

Award goes to Kim Sotiropulo

Champion Volunteer Group

This group has gone from strength to strength over the past couple of years with a new Chairman and Committee.  The move into new premises this year just before lockdown would have been a problem for most but this group got on with the task spectacularly and managed to open for a short time in the summer.  The village’s history is in good hands.

Award goes to Bembridge Heritage Society

Green Champions

The group can regularly be seen working away in the village Centre, tidying borders and arranging planters.  Cuttings are now been taken to cut down the costs of plants around the village, though the displays get better each year.

Award goes to Bembridge Community Gardeners

Champion Volunteers

The COVID-19 Helpline these volunteers set up was a lifeline to numerous residents in Bembridge this year, as many had been cut off from their normal support.  They set up, coordinated and worked day in day out all year to ensure everyone who contacted them got the help or advice they needed and were safe.

Award goes to Lorraine Bevan and Tim Young

Champion Business

They have gone above and beyond to provide support for residents with their free home deliveries and their work in partnership with the Island Food Bank.  They continue to be a point of contact with a friendly helpful ear and support for the community, achieving this with good grace and cheerfulness.

Award goes to Jane Holman and the Farm Shop

Community Champion

This person puts themselves out for others constantly from Scouts, to Community Bus to Cricket and many others in-between and always with a smile.  Driving the Community Bus on Mystery Tours and collecting residents for Lunch Club or Coffee Mornings, you are always in safe hands and there is always laughter.

Award goes to Paul Wray

Chairman’s Champion

This very special person has, over the years, worked hard for Bembridge. She can be seen dashing around the village, watering can in hand, making sure the Village Memorial Garden looks splendid as well as a lot of planters and hanging baskets that are scattered around. She has been instrumental in Bembridge in Bloom, organised the start of beach cleans and is a keen and active member of the Green Towns Group, helping Bembridge to win awards for the Best Kept Village. The list is endless but her energy and enthusiasm are what makes this person a star

Award goes to Barbara Clough

Thank you to all those winners and all who were nominated, without you all Bembridge would not be place we all love.

2018 Community Champion Awards

Bembridge is fortunate to have a number of people living in the village who give more than they take and these awards reflect in a small way the recognition and appreciation that we, as residents feel towards them.   This year we had numerous nominations in each category and the decisions on who would win was immense, so congratulations to all those nominated and sorry not all could be winners.   This year’s winners were presented by Cllr Keith Fagan with awards designed by Paul Critchley of Sculpture Glass and a certificate.


Nominated: Kerra Thomas, Bembridge Scouts Group

She is committed volunteer with an excellent attitude and deserves to be recognised for her contributions to the Beavers and Friendship Circle.

This year’s Champion Young Person is Kerra Thomas, received by Neil Thomas


Nominated: Sandra Beaney & Dave Tallis, Robert Barnes and Christina Pay

This award recognises those who take the time and trouble to help their neighbours who are in need of support when the unexpected happen.

This year’s Champion Neighbour is Sandra Beaney and Dave Tallis



Nominated: Bembridge Heritage Society, Bembridge Friendship Circle, Harold Lewis Lunch Club and Bembridge Primary School PTA

Throughout the year this group ensures that our older residents enjoy a good balanced meal twice a week. The community minibus collects those who need transport and the serving ladies always have a kind word for those attending.    A special thank you to Tina Wooding who unfortunately stepped down recently, her hard work is much appreciated by all of us.

This year’s Champion Volunteer Group is the Harold Lewis Lunch Club



Nominated: Green Town Steering Group and Sheila Weedall

Her enthusiasm is an inspiration and her contribution to green issues in the village is outstanding. She helps organise the litter picks, beach cleans, tidy up projects, started the Star Competition, finds new footpath projects for the Green Towns Group to work on, arranged the community walk, ordered the ‘small’ Airfield plaques for the War Memorial Gardens and is currently working on the Wave Sculpture for Lane End

This year’s Green Champion is Sheila Weedall



Nominated: Carol Doe, Olive Light, John Gulliver, Christine Brennan, Mike Foreman, Jenny Simmonds, Ben Whitewick and John Woodford

This award goes to someone who is always smiling, never fails to volunteer when asked and has amazing community spirit.   The flower displays at the Church each year are a testament to her creativity and always bring pleasure to the residents and visitors alike.

This year’s Champion Volunteer is Olive Light



Nominated: Jay at the Village Inn, Steve at the Welcome Store, Trevor at the Tollgate Café and Jane at the Farm Shop

This was a really tough category with numerous village businesses being nominated for doing remarkable community works, we are really lucky to have all of them.   The winning business has given support to local groups which goes unnoticed to many, organised charity events and has taken on the Street Fair, and given it a new lease of life.  The weekly quiz night with ‘Grand-dad’ is well known in the village, as is the warm welcome given to all by this ‘quiet’ man and his staff.

This year’s Champion Business is Jay Chapman and the Village Inn



Nominated: Derek & Angela George, John Woodford, Emma Goldring and Sheila Weedall

This person has for many years worked tirelessly for the Bembridge Heritage Society, is a local historian and has written many books about the history of Bembridge.   With the history of Bembridge at his fingertips he generously shares his knowledge with anyone who asks and without his willingness to share this information the history of the village could have easily vanished.  Hopefully this award will show how the community recognises his great contribution to our village.

This year’s Community Champion is John Woodford



This person has a great drive to help the village and is often arranging local campaigns to raise money, in many ways, including staff wear a hat days. But leaving Lake in the early hours to walk to Bembridge, 1 hour and 40 minutes, in the snow and then spending the day struggling around the village delivering food to anyone who could not get out of their front door, goes over and above the call of duty and needs special recognition on this special evening.

This year’s Special Recognition Award goes to Pete Jeffery



Following the horrendous lightning strike at 47 Egerton Road back in April and the subsequent fire, the bravery of Christopher Reed to enter the house twice saving his Nan and then the family’s dogs cannot be praised enough.   Without his quick thinking the devastating events of that night would have been unimaginable for the family.   He is a hero who deserves recognition for his actions that night.

This year’s Chairman’s Champion is Christopher Reed


Thank you all for your contributions to Bembridge, the village wouldn’t be the same without you all.

2016 Community Champion Awards Night

The popular Parish Council Community Champion Awards Night was held at the Village Hall on 1st July 2016 and a good evening was had by all that attended.

Bembridge is fortunate to have a number of these people living here. These awards reflect in a small way the recognition and appreciation that we, as residents feel towards them.  The winners were presented with awards beautifully designed by Paul Critchley of Sculpture Glass, Arreton Barns and a certificate.

The Award Winners were:

Champion Friend – Susan Crown who is Bembridge Primary Schools lollipop lady – has improved the safety of the lives of those around them through their voluntary efforts in the local and wider community.

Champion Business  – Steve Warburton and the staff of the Lane End Welcome Store. This award recognises a business that goes the extra mile and makes a special effort for the benefit of their customers and community.  Their fundraising has helped a number of charities and groups in the village and Steve is always ready to give his time to promote and assist in village events and projects.

Champion Volunteer –  Olive Light.  This award recognises someone who regularly gives up her time to contribute to the lives and wellbeing of the community.  She is always smiling and never fails to volunteer when asked. You will have already seen many successes with the Church Flowers Festival and Queens 90th celebrations.

Champion Youth Volunteer/Group  – Paul Wray and the Bembridge Scouts. This award in part recognises Paul and the scouts plus all those who regularly give up their time to contribute to the lives and wellbeing of youngsters by running youth clubs or groups for the community.

Champion Volunteer Group – The Green Towns Steering Group which is very deserving of a community champion award because of their inspirational dedication towards the upkeep of Bembridge. They have achieved many projects over the past few years such as footpath projects, pond clearing, beach cleans, litter picks, remembrance orchard, tidy up projects, palmer memorial restoration to name a few. They also have no dedicated budget so most of what they have achieved has been volunteer input or obtaining grant funding. Long may it continue.

Champion Volunteer Group  – Bembridge Weeders. This award recognises those who regularly give up their time to contribute to the lives and wellbeing of others, and keeps this vital service going in the village. Bembridge Weeders turn out week on week to maintain much loved area within our village such as the War Memorial gardens, Kings Oak, planters and hanging baskets. Without both of these group we wouldn’t be as successful as we are winning the Hampshire and IOW Village of the Year Awards, Wight in Bloom and Best Kept Village.

Chairman’s Champion – Sarah Portwine. This award is in recognition of an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the community over her time in the village. Thanks to Sarah the Bembridge Street Fair has continued and become even more successful not to mention the numerous events held at Steyne Park and BYCC.

Special Recognition – Alan Morris.  This award is in recognition of an individual who has made and continues to make an outstanding contribution to the community. His leadership as Chair of Governors in Bembridge is exemplary.

Community Champion – Steve Warburton.  What can one say about Steve other than Wow! This award is in recognition of an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the community in many areas and congratulations for all of the fundraising achievements.

Steve also presented a special recognition award to the Gully family who sadly were not present, but it was great to here that Sophie is now home and had visited her friends at school.

Congratulations to the winners and all those nominated.  Carry on the good work.

Parish Council Chambers, 5 Foreland Road, Bembridge
Isle of Wight, PO35 5XN
TEL: 01983 874160
Opening hours: Monday to Friday 9.30am – 12.30pm
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