Proud winners of Pride in Milton Keynes Awards 2013.

Stanair logoVoting opens soon for the People's Choice Award

Friday, October 3 at Hilton Milton Keynes

Costa logoThe Pride in MK awards, sponsored by Stanair and in association with Costa, recognise the achievements of special people within our area; those who have gone out of their way to help others, those who have overcome hardship and those who support a positive attitude within our community.

Voting for the People's Choice Award has now closed.


Adults £26.50 and children (12 and under) £16.50. Includes reception drink and three-course meal.

For more details contact or Pride in MK, The Events Team, c/o Northants Newspapers Ltd, Rothwell Road, Kettering, Northants NN16 8GA.

Categories, sponsors and People's Choice finalists

  • Costa logoCare in the Community

    Sponsored by Costa.

    Julie Bosdet (People's Choice code: 1018)

    Julie has been a foster carer for many years. She is currently fostering a child who is under two years old and has recently come out of hospital for the first time. He has severe medical and complex disability needs. This is such a big commitment and goes beyond that of a normal carer.

    Victoria Bryant (People's Choice code: 1036)

    Undecided about her career path; law or care, she volunteered in a Ghana orphanage and realised her vocation was in care. She qualified as a registered nurse in Feb 2012 and worked in intensive care, She joined PJ a year ago and after just six months won the company’s own internal Rising Star Award. Now she has been nominated for a Rising Star prize in the prestigious Nursing Times Awards.

    Iwona Mekarska (People's Choice code: 1012)

    She runs a Polish Saturday School in Milton Keynes - looks after a whole polish community in Milton Keynes. Gives her heart to kids, helps them all way through. She also manages the TIK TAK Childcare Polish nursery. She is a great teacher and friend to all Poles in MK, well known to the community and very much respected.

    MK-ACT (People's Choice code: 1025)

    Milton Keynes Women’s Aid (MK-ACT) is a local charity which works with over 100 families’ daily to help them move on from fear and abuse.This charity has recently won national recognition for the quality of the refuge service – and became one of only 40 services in the country to be described as a ‘Leading Light’. The team at MK ACT are making a huge difference to people in the community who are escaping from domestic violence.

    Sarah Gates (People's Choice code: 1033)

    CAKE! COMMUNITY! COMMITMENT! The 3 elements that are at the heart of her commitment to caring for others. She bakes amazing cakes that are shared at times of friendship, creativity and laughter. Organises Communtiy craft fairs, clubs, walks and Big Lunches, community Cafes and Christmas letter writing groups. She is committed and never asks people to do anything she wouldn't do herself. Always doing what she says she will, reliable at all times.

    Debbie Murray (People's Choice code: 1009)

    For the help and inspiration she gives to individuals who have undergone in the pass in some cases mental health problems, been in prison, drug addiction, have social problems. She never makes judgements but help them recover their self esteem by the work they do at the Box Gardens in Lloyds Court, a social enterprise that recycles wood for making boxes for the garden, bottle holders etc. Debbie is the most caring, forgiving and utterly inspiring person.

  • Domino's logoService with a Smile

    Sponsored by Domino's Pizza.

    Denise Niel (People's Choice code: 1010)

    Denise is an essential part of the charity MK Money Lifeline (MKML) free debt advice service. She goes above and beyond her paid for 8 hours a week by being on hand at least 4 days a week helping people with their difficulties and she loves seeing people change from being in a crisis situation to managing their life with many becoming debt-free

    Bletchley Park (People's Choice code: 1003)

    Thanks to the many visitors taking the time to complete a review on Bletchley Park, earned them a TripAdvisor ‘Certificate of Excellence’. Staff and volunteers endeavour to provide each visitor an immersive experience of what it was like during WW2 as a code-breaker which helped shorten the war by two years. Visitors can enjoy the museum , visitor centre, education centre, interactive exhibitions and many other amenities on site.

    Robert Harriman (People's Choice code: 1032)

    Has worked in Springfield/Fishermead/Oldbrook area for 12 years, he is dedicated to his job and no job is to big or to small, from attending meetings out of hours, to keeping the estates clean and tidy. He has always gone above and beyond the realms of his role to support anyone in need of help. He also won the regional heats for the Anglian region in the Pride of Great Britain 2012

    Mercer Hole - Paul Maberly (People's Choice code: 1038)

    As a local business celebrating 25 years in Milton Keynes, Paul a senior partner has helped grow the company from 6 staff to 45 staff for his dedication to customers. Mercer Hole is one of the country’s top 50 accountancy firms that not only understand the importance of customer service but is keen to give back to the community including the 25 acts of kindness campaign, supporting the MK Community Foundation, MK Foodbank, Willen Hospice and many more MK charity initiatives.

  • Marshall Amps logoYoung Achiever

    Sponsored by Marshall Amps.

    Paige Barnes (People's Choice code: 1027)

    Paige is a member of MMKAC athletics and has achieved many awards for her outstanding achievements in her sport over the years, and she recently went to English schools for hammer and went to this event ranked 14 but managed to come away with a big personal best and left being ranked 7th over all. She is hoping to finish this season with a 50 metres throw in hammer which ranks her 3rd in the county.

    Shamiso Hatchard (People's Choice code: 1034)

    A Webber Independent School student is regarded as one of the most promising young female golfers in the industry with an impressive five out of six wins this year. Her achievements include: Handicap (USGA) 0 (member of the Jumeirah Golf Estates, Dubai, United Arab Emirates) Handicap (CONGU) 3 (member of Woburn Golf Club, UK) Member of an England Golf Under 18 squad. Member of the Bucks county ladies 1st team (winners of Midland South region championship 2014). Bucks ladies 1st team County Colours awarded 2014 Sept 1st 2014. Won the Midlands South Under 18 championship plus many many more golfing successes.

    Louis Davey (People's Choice code: 1021)

    At only 12 years old he has raised over £1200 by coordinating collection pots at his local shops, organising race nights and raffles at local clubs as well as taking part in local runs for Willen Hospice. This year Louis has taken on his biggest challenge yet organising The Big Day Out on September 6th in Campbell Park, Central Milton Keynes which raised nearly £3000 for hospice.

    Cameron Millar (People's Choice code: 1004)

    A young man who went over and above in his fundraising efforts for the children’s ward at MK Hospital. An amazing individual, who, not only because of his fundraising, but because he has contracted and fought meningitis not once, but twice in his life. Cameron is an inspiration to young people everywhere. He overcame a terrifying illness twice and his first thought was to make things better for other children who might have to go through a similar experience.

  • University of Bedfordshire UCMK logoExcellence in Education

    Sponsored by University of Bedfordshire UCMK.

    Nana and Segun Oguntola (People's Choice code: 1026)

    Run an educational project called Junior Film Makers funded by local community organisations where children from across MK but primarily from non-affluent estates can make there own films. Children who lack in social skills, self confidence and who do not excel in education work with mentors to write, cast, film and edit short films and animation. It has made a big difference to the confidence of these children.

    Milton Keynes Museum Volunteers (People's Choice code: 1024)

    To these passionate and dedicated volunteers, the city owes one of the area’s most popular and loved tourist attractions, making history really live for schools, bringing closer different generations of families who come together, and attracting visitors into MK. It owes the preservation of fascinating objects and stories which would otherwise have been lost. Volunteers, many of them elderly, are so helpful and keen to share their knowledge, which brings it all to life.

    Maureen McColl (People's Choice code: 1023)

    Maureen CEO of MK-Snap has introduced over 21 creative and stimulating subjects in a holistic programme of person-centred education, life skills and work preparation to adults aged 16+ with learning difficulties. She is also championing the value of adults with learning difficulties throughout the MK business community and works tirelessly to break down barriers to employing people with disabilities. The MK Rose Project recognises disability in MK.

    Marilyn David (People's Choice code: 1022)

    With 15 years experience at Willen Hospice, for the past 9 years she has run the Practice Development Team which concentrates her skills on teaching all aspects of Palliative care. Not only does she run training sessions for hospice staff, she also links with local universities and encourages students to train and/or work at the hospice to gain knowledge and experience and runs an End-of-Life programme for district nurses and nursing home staff in the community.

  • Stanair logoFundraiser of the Year

    Sponsored by Stanair.

    The Henry Allen Trust - Team Henry (People's Choice code: 1035)

    Set up by Mark and Dawn in memory of their four year old son Henry Allen who sadly passed away last year. Henry's last request was to make other poorly children happy like him. The trust grants treats and wishes and raises awareness of childhood cancers. In just five months they have raised over £20k by biking from MK to paris, a parachute jump from a plane, fundays, discos and bag packing.

    Claire & Justin Crook (People's Choice code: 1007)

    After the tragic death of their poorly baby son William earlier this year who was born with heart, lung and renal complications at Great Ormand Street Hospital (GOSH), they have raised over £16k for the renal ward where William lived. They have set up 'Brighter Future Fund' in his name to help raise funds for other children and babies who have health complications and difficulties.

    Leanne Duggan (People's Choice code: 1020)

    Just five days before the due date of the birth of her baby boy Harris, she was told the devastating news that his heart had stopped beating. The post-mortem showed no reason to the cause. But despite her emotional trauma she wanted to help fund raise for the MK Hospital Charity and has raised over £2k in just two months with the Family Fun Day she organised which has also helped with the grieving process.

    Paul Heald (Mk Dons Coach) (People's Choice code: 1028)

    Took part in the annual Willen Hospice Tandem Skydive this year which gave a real boost to the promotion of this key event. He helped raise over £4.5K and raised the Willen Hospice profile by posting his thoughts and progress on the MK Dons website, and therefore encouraging Dons fans to sponsor him. Plus on the day he and his family were a delight as he was so excited about the jump, it really rubbed off on the other tandem jumpers.

    John Coates (People's Choice code: 1013)

    His son Martin, known as “Fraggle”, shockingly suffered a brutal attack 8 years ago – leaving him with very epilepsy. Headway MK supported him after his injury for three years before he sadly passed away. Fragile enjoyed the music scene and in memory of this, John organised 'fragfest', an annual music festival with local bands and fund raising activities to support Headway MK

    Jonathan and Tessa Cox (People's Choice code: 1015)

    Milton Keynes couple, Jonathan and Tessa Cox pushed themselves to the limit in June this year, by cycling 500km in four days from London to Paris on a tandem, and raised almost £3,000 for blood cancer charity Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research.Tessa, who lost a leg to cancer when she was younger, joined her husband Jonathan as they pedalled their way to Paris. The couple completed the event without having to get off and push at any point, even on the steepest hills.

  • Thames Valley logoOutstanding Example of Bravery

    Sponsored by Thames Valley PCC.

    Rachell Wood (People's Choice code: 1031)

    Her son was born with a missing chromosome ‘22Q11 Deletion’ and after having heart surgery at two days old and learning he would have on-going physical and mental problems she has put her all into helping him and now has physical problems of her own, but for someone who has to drive everywhere because of pain she managed to run the London marathon this year which was a great achievement to help make people aware of this problem.

    Dawn Allen (People's Choice code: 1008)

    She fights everyday finding the strength to help poorly children with cancer after her son Henry died of cancer last year. Through the heartache and grieve, she strives to honour her son's last wish; creating wishes and treats for children with cancer. Instead of turning her back on the world and children with cancer, she set-up the Henry Allen Trust and fights on in his honour.

    Joshua John Cullip (People's Choice code: 1016)

    He is battling a rare terminal illness called Niemann Pick and not only has he had this disease, Joshua has also had countless operations to remove infected lymp nodes, ​and recently diagnosed with coeliac disease, but no matter what life throws at him, he takes life on the chin and is so caring he loves to get involved and help with any fundraising events where on countless occasions has given his own presents to raffles, sold his own toys and donated toys to Ward 5 ​Mk Hospital and Helen House Hospice.​

    Klaudia Piwowar (People's Choice code: 1019)

    At 12 years old, she came to England from Poland not speaking English. She lost her father who passed away 10 years ago and her baby brother died of cancer. She has endured so much at such a young age; growing up in a deprived area of MK, with a language barrier and other integration issues. But she has persevered, she joined the MK Leadership Academy and helps others in a whole range of sport activities, she is a selfless young lady whose focus is entirely on others.

  • MK Community Foundation logoUnsung Hero/Heroine

    Sponsored by MK Community Foundation

    Alan Parsons (People's Choice code: 1002)

    He actively became involved with Different Strokes MK when his wife had a stroke and who sadly passed away in 2011. He organises the service and co-ordinates events, always helping to raise funds to enable the stroke survivors to access a wide variety of activities including the successful ARNI (Action for Rehabilitation from Neurological Injury) which wouldn't have got off the ground without his dedication.

    Fran and Len Gurd (People's Choice code: 1011)

    They met through the MND Association (Motor Neurone Disease) after they both lost their partners to this incurable disease. Fran supports sufferers and families in their homes and continues to support grieving families after the death of a loved on. In four years they have raised over £100k from their innovative 'Fish with the Star' an annual fishing and entertainment event.

    Carol Osborne (People's Choice code: 1005)

    At the age of fifty Carol was diagnosed with breast cancer and survived. To give something back she entered the 'Cycle For Life' for Cancer Research UK. The following year she found out that the organisers were no longer holding the event and she took over the reins. In the last 9 years, Carol has put 'Get On Your Bike MK' in front of everything raising over £105K for CRUK. She is kind, considerate and will help anyone in difficulty.

    Wendy Leeson (People's Choice code: 1037)

    An inspiration to all who know her. She always puts others first; from caring for her parents 24/7 until they passed away, her niece and to many other family members, friends and people in her community. Although dealing with her own physical pains, she never complains and remains positive and supportive for the people around her.

    Jon & Louise Shannon (People's Choice code: 1014)

    When Kathryn moved to MK with her two children 4 years ago after the death of her brother and was going to hospital to be a liver transplant donator for her mother, Jon and Louise were her saviours. In addition to so many acts of kindness, they cared for her children when she went into hospital, even though Louise sadly lost her own mother. The couple always put others first and will do anything to help, they are a very selfless couple and well known for their kindness.

    Paul Hinson (People's Choice code: 1029)

    As Chief executive of Willen Hospice, he has seen the hospice go through some challenging times which has made fundraising for the charity much more difficult. He has taken this into account and he has committed to several tough bicycle rides including the recent 100 mile cycle to London in the worst of weathers. He has raised thousands of pounds for the charity to help maintain it's high levels of care for patients and families.

  • Safer MK logoMaking MK Safer

    Sponsored by Safer MK.

    Abdirahman Abdulaahi (People's Choice code: 1001)

    Works as a volunteer with the Sumali Outreach Project alongside the Thames Valley Police. This youth project helps tackle crime and anti-social behaviour in local communities. He understands the culture differences and plays a vital part in supporting and educating the youth

    Julie and Terry Baines (People's Choice code: 1017)

    Both run the Fishermead Residents Association with the key aims to keep the estate clean and safe. Liaising with the local council, residents, local schools and the Parish council. They also organise fairs to bring residents together and work tirelessly to lift the peoples spirit to create a happy community environment

    Environmental Crime Unit MKC (People's Choice code: 1030)

    Pete Roberts (manager) Wayne Turner, Shaun Grieg, Peter J Roberts and Sam Slaney play a massive role in dealing with and educating local residents about litter and fly-tipping, dog fowling and abandoned vehicle issues as well as travellers and encampments. A small team but their efforts and successes are great

    Christine Duncan (People's Choice code: 1006)

    A community safety co-ordinator for the Bucks and MK Fire and Rescue Service (BMKFRS). She has played a vital role in reducing open water site incidents, domestic violence, residential hoarding issues, accident and emergencies, increasing the safety of vulnerable residents and educating adults and children about these many issues. She has made many partnerships with local agencies and trusts to help implement initiatives to make MK a safer place to live

  • Western Power logoPeople's Choice Award

    Sponsored by Western Power.

    This award will be decided by public vote following the short listing of entries by the judging panel. How to vote »

  • Heart logoHow to make a nomination

    Nominations have now closed.

    The awards ceremony will be held on October 3.