Bernard Matthews Youth Awards 2011 finalists

From stories of immense courage to tales of excellence in sport and dedication to charity...

Nominations for the Bernard Matthews Youth Awards 2011 have highlighted some truly inspirational young people from Norfolk and Suffolk.

The standard of entries was extremely high and judges faced a tough task picking the finalists for the awards which are supported by the EDP, The Duke of Edinburgh's Award, Open Youth Trust, and The Garage.

The decisions have now been made and the details of those shortlisted in the eight categories can now be revealed.

Lorna Cousins, marketing controller, corporate communications, at Bernard Matthews, said: 'This has been an exceptional year for the Bernard Matthews Youth Awards.

'The standard of entries has been extraordinary and as always a humbling process for the judging panel.

'These awards look to celebrate the achievements of young people between the ages of 11 and 18 and every single entry we received has been remarkable. Across all eight categories we have seen examples of young people showing outstanding achievements and we look forward to celebrating with them, their friends and family at our awards event in February half term.'

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The awards ceremony will be held at Open in Norwich in February. The winner of each category will receive a �1,000 prize to help them fulfil their ambitions. There will also be a special winner of winners prize.

Below are the details of those who have made the shortlist. Six names have been shortlisted for sport, community support and bravery because of the wealth of entries for these categories.

Community Support

t Charlie Dinsdale and Witney Catchpole, 17 and 16, from Carlton Colville, near Lowestoft, for being the driving force behind the Shelter a Hoodie Project in Carlton Coleville.

The group was formed to help resolve complaints about noise from older residents. The project has raised �9,500 which has funded a solar panel teen shelter in a local park where young people can meet without disturbing other members of the community.

t Holt Youth Project, for being involved in a range of work in the community. The project members have formed ROPE (Reaching out Project to the Elderly) which bridges the gap between the generations with events like cream teas and bingo. They have created a DVD about life in rural Norfolk, and taken part in lots of community events such as Holt Summer Festival.

t The Youth Advisory Panel, a group of young volunteers aged 12 to 18-years-old, many of who have been victims of crime. The panel, based in Norwich, helps Victim Support and other agencies improve their services to help young people affected by crime.

t Breckland Youth Council, a team of young people aged 15 to 19, For their commitment to giving young people in their area a voice, and for being involved in a range of community initiatives including the Pride in Breckland Youth Awards and a campaign to break down the barriers between young people and the elderly.

t Hannah Fenn, 17, from Bradwell, Great Yarmouth, for her dedication over a number of years to making sure the views of young people are heard, in particular by being involved in five Norfolk County Council voluntary groups including the Youth Forum, Scrutiny Panel and Sorted Project.

t Josie Andrews, 15, from Norwich, for her huge commitment to Bowthorpe-based Hat Trick Football which works with children in an area of social deprivation to teach them football skills.

Among her achievements Josie organised a football skills event for more than 100 primary school children.

Sporting Achiever

t Victoria Williamson, 17, from Hevingham, near Norwich, for excellence in sprint track cycling and winning a whole host of medals in her sport.

Victoria rides for the Great Britain junior team and this year competed in Italy, Russia and Belgium.

She was selected for the Great Britain under 23 team sprint held in Russia, and is on the British Cycling Sprint Olympic Development Programme.

t Albert Hicks, 16, from Attleborough, for great achievement in kayak racing, in particular in marathon racing.

For the past three years he has been the highest ranked marathon racing junior in Norfolk, and he is also ranked in the top division in sprint racing. He has represented Great Britain in the World Marathon Championships in Spain.

t Annabelle Block, 17, from Henstead, near Beccles, for dedication to and excellence in horse riding in a range of disciplines. Annabelle has won a range of accolades over many years.

t Matthew Fidgett, 18, from Costessey, Norwich, for his achievements in tenpin bowling. Matthew is a member of the junior international team for England. He has bowled with Team England in five major events and many minor events in the past four years, and has won numerous medals in his sport.

t Emily Crowe, 12, from Sprowston, near Norwich, for excellence in gymnastics. Emily is an elite gymnast in the British squad, and British floor champion for her age. She has been the Norfolk champion for the last four years and is the 2010 British schools' champion.

t Alfie Hewett, 13, from Cantley, for excellence in wheelchair tennis. Alfie was part of the junior Great Britain squad in the World Team Cup in Turkey this year and was the youngest junior player of the tournament. He also holds the national junior boys singles and doubles titles for 2010.

Bravery

t James Crisp, 17, from Harleston, for caring for his disabled mother who has severe arthritis and his 10 year-old disabled brother who has a mental age of six. He has cared for them for several years, and as well as his role as a carer he is also studying for three A Levels.

t Molly, Lauren and William Spinks, 16, 18 and 14, from Caister-on-Sea near Great Yarmouth. Their mother has a chronic illness which has led to her having six respiratory arrests. Molly. Lauren and William have carried out lifesaving first aid to save their mother's life and work as a team to care for their mother.

t Luke and Jodie Shambrook, 15 and 16, from Thetford, for the courage they have shown in overcoming the trauma of being bullied for two years.

t Kelsey McTaggart, 17, from Ashill, near Watton. In 2009 Kelsey suffered a massive arterial ventricular malformation of the brain and a stroke which left her unable to breathe unaided, walk, talk, see or communicate.

Kelsey has courageously worked to re-learn things other people take for granted, and despite everything has also achieved 13 GCSEs.

t Bethany Skipper, 15, from Yaxham, near Dereham, for her great courage in battling Hodgkin's Lymphoma, staying positive and being determined to carry on attending school and army cadets despite having to undergo a year of gruelling chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

She has also worked with her mum and step-dad to raise �3,500 for the Teenage Cancer Trust.

t Ryan Dagg, 18, from Dereham, for showing exceptional courage in the face of an extremely debilitating illness. Ryan was diagnosed with an immune deficiency called vasculitis when he was in year nine, and during year 13 suffered a series of strokes that left him in a coma.

Despite everything he fought his way back to health and was determined to continue with his A Levels.

Charity

t Nathan Ward, 14, from Lowestoft, for his work helping a support group for people with multiple sclerosis called SHIMS.

He also works with the Norwich Sci-Fi Club to raise funds for a number of different charities, and he has raised money for Help an East Coast Child.

t A team from The Magpie Centre, Runcton Holme, near King's Lynn, for their work with the West Norfolk Riding for the Disabled Association and the Breckland Special Olympics equestrian groups.

t Kirsty Ward, 17, from Hellesdon, near Norwich, for organising a superhero fun run which raised more than �1,000 for Norfolk and Norwich Scope Association (NANSA) which helps people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities.

Young Farmer

t Tom Buck, 14, from Yaxham, near Dereham, for his commitment to breeding poultry ranging from dewlap toulouse geese to pekin bantams. Tom belongs to seven poultry clubs, goes to shows all over the country, and is enthusiastic about making more young people interested in poultry.

t Robert Crawford, 17, from Topcroft, near Bungay, for his dedication to breeding cattle including Holstein and Ayrshire cattle.

Robert has had a successful year on the show scene at county and national level, and is also involved in arable farming.

Cultural Achiever

t Charlotte Evans, 18, from Little Ellingham, near Attleborough, for outstanding achievements in music, in particular playing the oboe.

Charlotte is part of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, as well as being the principal oboe and cor anglais of the Norfolk Youth Orchesta and wind quintet.

t James Seabrook, 17, from Bungay, for his dedication to music, including excellence in tuba playing, setting up a Man Choir for teenage boys, and helping to found a rock band in which he sings and plays the keyboard.

t North Walsham High School, for completing a two-and-a-half year project to create a full-length feature film involving students from England. Germany and Romania.

Environmental

t Flexi Horticulture Group, from City College Norwich, for their work in partnership with Norwich in Bloom. The members grow plants and help improve the environment in a range of areas around the city including St Stephen's Church, Harford Manor School and Norwich Cathedral.

t Eco Bugs Group, a team of 11 to 16-year-olds from Wayland Community High School, in Watton, for the group's commitment to helping the environment at their school and in their local community. The group has nine teams - garden, wildlife, energy, pond, recycling, litter, transport, eFutures and community rangers.

The group funds itself from the income it makes from recycling various materials.

t Bungay High School Environmental Conservation Group, a team of 15 and 16-year-olds, for their conservation work in Norfolk and north Suffolk, This includes being involved in a project to build a railway sleeper boardwalk at Roydon Fen, near Diss, and undertaking some habitat improvement work at Boons Heath.

Educational Achievement

t Natalie West, 17, from Norwich, for excellent academic achievement at GCSE and A level as well as achieving great things in drama including teaching performance classes for young children.

t VTalentYear, a group from Great Yarmouth College, for overcoming a range of factors to attend college and being commited to volunteering for up to 30 hours a week to help good causes.

t Saul Watson, 17, from Costessey, near Norwich, for achieving good GCSEs and working hard towards his dream of studying aeronautical engineering at university while also being a young carer for his mum.