durham county council largeUnsung sports stars, coaches, clubs and schools are to be celebrated with the return of the County Durham Sport and Physical Activity Awards.

Nominations are now open across 13 categories, including Coach of the Year, Volunteer of the Year, Sports Club of the Year, Sporting Achievement of the Year, and Contribution to Sport.

Cllr Maria Plews, cabinet member for leisure, libraries and lifelong learning at Durham County Council, which organises the local round of the competition, said: “We know that there are many people out there who, through their love of sport and physical activity, and tireless work, make a massive contribution to our communities.

“I think it is wonderful to once again be able to shine a light on the fantastic things they do.”

Nominations are invited from both individuals and groups from County Durham to celebrate success and achievements in sport and physical activity.

Categories also include Physical Activity Achievement of the Year, Contribution to Physical Activity, Volunteer of the Year and both primary and secondary awards for School Contribution to PE and School Sport.

Nominations will be judged by an independent selection panel, with shortlists and awards across four geographic areas.

Those who are successfully shortlisted will be invited to attend, with a guest, a local celebratory evening – with the winners going on to compete for county wide awards, which are organised by County Durham Sport.

Nigel Douthwaite, the council’s principal sports manager, said: “There is some exceptional work happening in our communities to support local people of all ages and abilities to access sport and physical activity.