'Bursting with pride' - judges delight at the Best of South Tyneside Awards entries as they chose the shortlist

Just amazing – there is no other way to describe the outstanding entries in this year’s Best of South Tyneside Awards.

Thursday, 25th November 2021, 4:55 am

A panel of judges met to scrutinise the huge list of nominations for this year’s awards which were the first to be held since the pandemic.

It was no easy task to whittle down such a strong field and every panel member agreed that the standard of nominations was inspiring.

Judges had to decide on the best entries in categories which included Fundraiser of the Year, Sports Team of the Year, and Greener South Tyneside.

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The Best of South Tyneside Awards judging panel.

They scrutinised entries in the Entrepreneur, Child of Courage, Community Champion and Business of the Year sections.

The standard of nominations in the brand new Covid Hero category was outstanding and it was just as strong in the Local Hero and Young Performer of the Year sections.

Eventually, the panel did decide on a shortlist on each section and we will be sharing details of those finalists in a Shields Gazette story soon.

In the meantime, the judges had these messages for everyone who entered.

The judging panel for the Best of South Tyneside Awards. Colin Burgin-Plews, Tracey Dixon, Joy Yates and Nicola Meldrum.

Tracey Dixon, the Leader of South Tyneside Council, said: "South Tyneside is a small borough but has a huge heart which has been highlighted during the judging of these Best of South Tyneside awards.

"Everyone shortlisted deserves recognition for the part they play in our community."

Colin Burgin-Plews is a former Best of South Tyneside award winner himself and is the fundraising hero who is known as ‘Big Pink Dress’.

Colin has done so much to help others over the years and has raised £144,000 for worthy causes through events such as the Great North Run.

The judging panel for the Best of South Tyneside Awards. Colin Burgin-Plews, Tracey Dixon, Joy Yates and Nicola Meldrum.

He said: "I have lived here my whole life, outside of being in the forces, and I am always in awe of the talent, generosity and selflessness of the people in South Tyneside."

Joy Yates, the regional director of JPIMedia North East, said: "Being from South Shields these awards are extremely close to my heart.

"It makes me burst with pride to play a small part in honouring the amazing people who live, work or contribute in a positive way to our borough."

Nicola Meldrum, the regional commercial manager for JPIMedia North East, said: "Thanks must go to all our readers and advertisers who took time to nominate individuals and organisations and to our sponsors who enable us to deliver these awards.

The Best of South Tyneside Awards.

"It was such a privilege to be part of the judging process and read about such inspirational and motivational people."

Supporting the Best of South Tyneside Awards this year are sponsors including South Tyneside Council, South Tyneside College, JML, Harlow Printing, South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust, Goldfinch Estate Agents, and Barbour. We thank them all.

The Best of South Tyneside finals night will be held on Wednesday, December 15. The Shields Gazette will be there to bring you full coverage of the event and watch out for a post-awards night supplement with more interviews and photos after the event.

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