Inspiring Aberdeenshire 2018 winners

The Inspiring Aberdeenshire 2018 winners have been announced.

They were revealed at a ceremony at Haddo House this evening (15.6.2018). The event is run by Aberdeenshire Council to celebrate the work of people in the area who support their communities, often unsung heroes. It is now in its sixth year and promotes all that is great about Aberdeenshire, with awards for community spirit, courage and care, among others.  More nominations than ever meant a lot of great nominees, some wonderful finalists, and a very hard decision for the judges. 

Provost, Cllr Bill Howatson said: “What a wonderful night. Inspiring Aberdeenshire is a fantastic event to showcase the hard work and dedication of the people of Aberdeenshire and the 2018 awards were a great success.”

“It is proving to be more and more difficult each year for the judging panel to decide who should walk away with a trophy. There are so many wonderful people in our communities who are willing to go above and beyond to support each other. Each finalist is a true winner as their efforts and dedication are invaluable.

“It was also good to see so many Aberdeenshire Council staff were nominated, it really shows how valued our people are in the communities they serve.”

“My sincere thanks to every who helped make the awards happen.”

Inspiring Aberdeenshire Winners 2018

Beautiful Aberdeenshire Environmental Award

Aimee Bainbridge (Newtonhill Primary School)
Aimee has gone above and beyond her teaching role to drive forward environmental awareness among pupils, staff and parents at the school in a range of areas within her community to ensure future generations.

Community Spirit Award

Theresa Ritchie (Peterhead)
Theresa was nominated for being someone who really stands out in the Peterhead community, having clocked thousands of hours of volunteering, championing local causes, and making a real and tangible difference to people’s lives.

The Cultural Award

The Gaitherin’ (Inverurie)
The Gaitherin’ is a Scottish music-based week held in the school holidays for pupils across central Aberdeenshire, to promote traditional music, drama and dance weeks, concerts and workshops. At the heart of their work is an ambition to encourage young people to develop new skills.

Aberdeenshire’s Future Award

Jenna Warrender (Banff)
Jenna has used her own personal experiences to help other people in a way that is both admirable and inspirational. She is from a care-experienced background and has mobilised that to make herself the voice of young people in her community. Jenna really is a ‘go-to’ person for anyone in trouble or needing some advice, and she is a fantastic inspiration. 

Heart of Aberdeenshire Caring award

Kelly Sinclair (Inverurie)
The nomination form sums up Kelly perfectly. It says: “I saw this award and thought of Kelly, she is the most caring person I know and has given her all as a youth worker in Inverurie for almost 15 years.”

Inspirational Volunteer award

Morag Lightning (Turriff)
Morag served her country in the RAF for more than 20 years, including in Iraq and Afghanistan. Since then she has thrown herself into the community in which she grew up, supporting the Friends of Turriff Cemetery, the RAF association, is active on the community council, and the community singers.   

Local Hero Courage award

Jenna Warrender (Banff)
This is Jenna’s second nomination and her second win of the night. The work she does, having come from a background of care, takes strength, courage and determination. Her enthusiasm and passion for helping other young people in her Banff community and giving them a voice is essential and admirable and her courage shows in everything she puts her mind to. 
Lifetime Achievement award

John and Rita Strang (Kincardine O’Neil)
John and Rita, who are both in their 80s, have just retired after devoting their lives to the community in which they live on Deeside. Through the running of the village petrol station and a haulage business, they have repeatedly gone over and above for the residents and for their customers. There are so many tales of this couple doing everything in their power to help village residents and have contributed significantly to village life, and it seems that retirement is unlikely to slow them down. 

A list of all finalists across all categories can be found here: