We are now in the final countdown to the Examiner Pride of Huddersfield awards which will be held at the John Smith’s Stadium this Thursday.
Today we reveal the three nominees in the Community Event category and tomorrow will unveil the shortlist in the Courage Award. The winners will be announced on the night.
Here are the nominees for the Community Event award:
Stafflex Big Screen Weekends
- Lindley Infant School lollipop patrol campaign1:08
- Jason McCartney questions Jeremy Hunt in House of0:49
- Gung-ho! inflatable fun0:56
- Health meeting in Slaithwaite0:50
- Burger with a pint of liquid cheese1:12
- Mobile phones and driving: changes in the law0:41
- Appeal to trace two men after a distraction theft0:38
St George’s Square was transformed into a massive outdoor cinema in a clever idea to provide a free family day out which ended up raising awareness and money for two Huddersfield charities.
The Big Screen Weekends last June and August were organised and sponsored by recruitment company Stafflex which is based at Chapel Hill.
The screenings of several family films over both weekends were free and the money-raising came from food and drink stalls.
The Big Screen Weekends were nominated by Sam Watt from The Star Inn at Folly Hall, who said: “The events have been celebrated as an excellent example of private enterprise facilitating free public events at no cost whatsoever to ratepayers or the council. Stafflex brought together the community and businesses of Huddersfield.”
The Big Screen Weekends was an idea developed by Huddersfield employment agency Stafflex in conjunction with Food Festivals as a way of marking and celebrating the firm’s 15 years in business.
Stafflex business development executive Poppy Stahelin said: “It was so important to raise awareness for the charities and all they do for their communities. But many businesses came to see what we were doing and so our aim was to give them an insight into what could be achieved with businesses working together and hopefully giving some ideas about what can be done in the future.
“With Kirklees Council pulling back on staging events it’s important local businesses work together to devise ways to stage events for the people of Huddersfield to enjoy.”
Kirklees College also pitched in, providing student volunteers to steward the event and also to pick up litter.
Kirklees TV also helped out by producing a video of the events.
The mega-sized all-weather cinema screen featured family blockbusters such as Toy Story, Shrek, Grease, Lion King and a Frozen singalong.
It was January 2015 and a group of people in Linthwaite decided to meet up after complaining to one another about the lack of festive spirit in Linthwaite that Christmas.
They decided that festive cheer would return to the Colne Valley village the next Christmas ... and it certainly did after they formed the Linthwaite Christmas Lights Community Group.
They were nominated by Ruth Stainsbury who said: “They wanted to make sure Linthwaite wasn’t the only village in the Colne Valley without some seasonal lights.
“After an exciting first meeting full of ideas and suggestions from enthusiastic attendees the committee emerged and plans were laid. Over the next months some of the original enthusiasm and volunteers waned – but a core of staunch believers hung on in and ensured the project didn’t falter.
“Over the rest of the year regular meetings took place, local businesses were canvassed to sponsor lights, support was offered from the neighbouring village of Slaithwaite to help get things moving and support with planning and practical help. Fundraising events took place bringing together a community for what felt to many like the first time. Friendships were built and the community blossomed.”
And they were ready for action last November, despite some terrible weather.
Volunteers went up in a cherry picker to get the lights put up on the lamp posts and once other businesses saw how great they looked they wanted to become involved and further sponsorship was obtained for more Christmas trees.
The Big Switch On was held on Sunday, November 22, featuring a range of family activities, entertainment and stalls at Linthwaite Methodist Chapel in the afternoon culminating in the lights being turned on by Huddersfield Giants player Earl Crabtree and Nico from Colne Valley Black Belt Academy.
Ruth added: “It felt like the whole village turned out to cheer this on and then delighted in Santa arriving to hand out sweets to the thrilled children.”
Planning is well underway for even better lights in 2016 and Ruth added: “Aside from the addition of festive lighting in Linthwaite, a sense of community and a ‘we can do it’ attitude has prevailed. The bulk of the team have no experience of something like this and shown real commitment, drive and enthusiasm to make this project happen.”
The core team has been Ruth (secretary), Richard Pozley (chairman), Aisling Keane (treasurer) and committee members Richard Izzard, Kate Stanley, Trina Edley, Rebecca McManus and Kim Strickson.
Golcar Lily Day
It’s been going for 10 years and has gone from strength to strength ever since, fostering a brilliant community spirit all year round.
Golcar Lily Day is now more than just a one day event – it’s grown into a whole year of fundraising events to set up a weekend of fun and activities for all ages.
It was nominated by Vicky Holliday from Golcar, who said: “It’s a real coming together of business, community groups and volunteers to provide entertainment for all the family. I only moved to Golcar last year and this group welcomed me with open arms and I’ve been so impressed with what they achieve.
“Most impressive of all is the team of volunteers chair Sue Starr has pulled together to work with her including scouts, the Round Table, farmers, primary schools, churches, business owners and residents.
“Her welcoming and determined attitude draws people together and enables them to be part of it no matter what their ability or level of commitment. This rubs off on the team, making them a fun and friendly group to work with.”
The event costs around £12,000 to stage and the money comes from fundraising along with a lot of help from the By and Buy charity shop on Sycamore Avenue in Golcar.
Sue Starr, who is chair of the Golcar Lily Day Group, added: “Volunteering makes Golcar what it is. When we started we asked what Golcar was all about and decided it was music and food so we always put on plenty of free music in five churches and other venues. We decided to have one big party and recognise everything that makes Golcar great.”
Food is also everywhere ranging from bacon butties through lunches to afternoon teas.
This year the event featured a procession, a bake-off contest, a fly-past by a WW2 Hurricane, several brass bands, maypole dancing, a tractor pull by rival teams many from pubs, morris dancing, craft activities, a historical re-enactment group and demonstrations by Colne Valley Museum.
The star attraction on the Sunday was the Golcar Sing in Providence Methodist Church – a chance for everyone to come together and celebrate the joy of singing.
The same group of volunteers also maintain a website (www.golcarlilyday.co.uk) featuring a comprehensive list of activities in Golcar and the surrounding Colne Valley area, has an environment group to keep the village clean and tidy and has just launched an Adopt A Ginnel scheme to keep the passages in Golcar weed-free and accessible. They have even published a book called Golcar Lives about the people of Golcar.
Award sponsor: Cummins Turbo Technologies
Cummins Turbo Technologies is extremely proud to continue our support of the Examiner awards ceremony and in 2016 we are sponsoring the Community Event Award.
Cummins has a long history in Huddersfield on the St Andrews Road site where the turbocharger company was original founded in 1952.
In the first year Holset employed 25 people and had sales of £45,000. In 1973 Holset was purchased by Cummins and today we have approximately 1,000 people employed in Huddersfield and the global turbocharger business now exceeds $1Bn.
Cummins is committed to corporate social responsibility in all our local communities around the world.
Our employees serve our communities by volunteering time and talent to help address community needs.
Improving our communities implies a broader level of involvement, engaging in dialogue around problems, building coalitions around solutions and giving resources and skills. In 2015 we engaged 850 members of our staff in community work contributing over 8,200 hours.
We know the Pride of Huddersfield Awards is a fantastic event that recognises some truly outstanding work in our area.
We are excited to be there again this year.