He's a top-notch South Shields story teller and a first-class 'Santa ' who brought 'hope to hundreds' through Covid

A man hailed as a Covid hero – who has ‘brought hope to hundreds’ – is in the running for a Best of South Tyneside Award.

Sunday, 24th October 2021, 4:55 am

Stephen Sullivan said it was ‘wonderful’ that he had been nominated for his efforts during lockdown but in modest style, he added: “I don’t think I have done anything special.”

Stephen, who runs Ziggy’s bar in South Shields, set up the ‘Story time with Stevey’ broadcast at the start of the first lockdown in March 2020.

Every day, he would do three online story time sessions with a morning one for children, tea-time broadcasts for junior and senior school students, and a night-time 10pm broadcast for adults.

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Stephen Sullivan who has been nominated for a Best of South Tyneside Award.

They attracted up to 17,000 listeners but Stephen went even further with his lockdown support for others.

“He made it his business to continue to bring support and happiness to the community via his daily online ‘Story time with Stevey’, his virtual quiz nights and even walking the streets dressed as Sant Claus on Christmas Eve, said one of the award nominations for him.

"He is the founder of the ‘Hospitality South Tyneside’ Facebook group to keep businesses updated on guidelines and financial support.”

The nomination added: “With the support of his team at Ziggy’s he has brought hope to hundreds, friendship to many and continues to offer a sparkle to anyone who has the good fortune to come into contact with him as we emerge from these darkest times.”

The Best of South Tyneside Awards.

Stephen said: “For a stranger to take the time to nominate me is wonderful. I don’t think I did anything special. Someone needed to do it and I was in a position to do it.”

Stephen becomes the latest in a huge selection of nominations for the awards which is the first to be held since the pandemic.

The annual Best of South Tyneside Awards are back with a headline sponsor of UTS and we won’t rest until we have found those inspirational people who make a difference to so many lives.

Is there a role model, a carer, or a child who you think shows incredible courage? Do you want to honour a community stalwart who goes the extra mile to help others without asking for acknowledgement.

Is there a child of achievement who has gone that extra length to achieve their targets?

Or is there a young stage star who would deserve to win the Young Performer of the Year category.

All these and more will be honoured in our annual awards where you can make all the difference.

Get those nominations in. Send them by email to [email protected] co.uk.


Local Hero Award.

Fundraiser of the Year.

Small business of the Year.

Sporting Achievement of the Year.

Community Champion.

Community Group of the Year.

Large Business of the Year.

Sports Team of the Year.

Child of Achievement.

Green Champion of the Year.

Child of Courage.

Young Performer of the Year.

Entrepreneur of the Year.

Covid hero of the year.

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