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Norfolk youth's gold winners

PUBLISHED: 13:01 29 June 2006 | UPDATED: 11:06 22 October 2010

Actress Claire Goose hands out Duke of Edinburgh's gold awards at a glittering ceremony at the Queen's Sandringham home.

Actress Claire Goose hands out Duke of Edinburgh's gold awards at a glittering ceremony at the Queen's Sandringham home.

It was a celebration of all that is positive about the younger generation.

Forty young people from across Norfolk received their Duke of Edinburgh's gold award from actress Claire Goose at a glittering ceremony at the Queen's Sandringham home.

It was a celebration of all that is positive about the younger generation.

Forty young people from across Norfolk received their Duke of Edinburgh's gold award from actress Claire Goose at a glittering ceremony at the Queen's Sandringham home.

They were among a total of 61 recipients of the scheme's highest accolade in the county this year, which is the 50th anniversary of the launch of the awards.

Nearly five million people worldwide have now taken part in the Duke of Edinburgh's Award, one of the most highly-regarded programmes of personal development for 14 to 25-year-olds.

Achieving the prestigious gold badge takes about 18 months and involves a wide-ranging combination of learning new skills, helping others, physical recreation, a residential project and an expedition.

“Its purpose is to involve the youngsters, to develop them and give them confidence and self-esteem and the skills of working with others - particularly as part of a team, and also leadership,” explained Trevor Forecast, West Norfolk chairman of the awards.

“It's not meant to be easy. When you have got it, it's quite an achievement.”

Wednesday night's event, which also honoured seven Millennium Volunteers, was held in a marquee in the parkland near the royal residence and attended by nearly 300 people, including civic dignitaries and leading members of the local business community.

To mark the anniversary, three speakers described their award experiences: Tim Fielding from Wayland Community High School, Watton, who gains his gold this year; Adele Powell, who told how her career has been helped by receiving hers in 2003; and John Norton, head of regeneration at West Norfolk Council, who became a gold badge holder 40 years ago.

Miss Goose, who grew up at nearby Dersingham and went to Wisbech Grammar School, is another former participant in the scheme, having achieved bronze and silver awards.

“It's getting more and more important,” said Mr Forecast. “I talk to employers and more and more they are looking at candidates' CVs to see if they've got the gold award because they know they've got the qualities of leadership and being able to work in a team and understanding people.

“It's definitely not a competitive thing and it's not a membership thing that you have to have certain qualifications for. It's open to absolutely everybody and it's for them to achieve whatever they particularly want to achieve in life, with the help of this framework.

“It's choose, enjoy and remember. It's not a thing where 'you will join and you will do this.' It's 'come along and try, and what have you always wanted to do - and let's have a go and find someone to teach you.

“For those of us who manage it, you see these young people develop and just blossom - it's just great.”

Mr Forecast said the presentation was a celebration of what young people could do.

“Our cars were parked by the air cadets, the music was supplied by the 35-piece West Norfolk Jubilee Youth Concert Band, were were waited on by students from the College of West Anglia department of hospitality and of course we all celebrated 61 gold awards and seven Millennium Volunteers receiving their awards,” he said.

Gold Award winners

Katie Allen, Jasmine Allen, Craig Beck, Victoria Bloom, Elliot Bloomfield, David Boyce, Jennifer Brown, Misty Brunton, Alice Burridge, Morgan Bye, Stephen Carr, Dominic Churchyard, Oliver Churchyard, Matthew Coutts, Rebecca Daly, Scott Davis, Stacey Doy, Laura Edwards, Amanda Eley, Timothy Fielding, Stephanie Fisher, Emma Gray, Lucy Green, Rachel Green, Joanna Hall, George Harvey, Francisco Hoi, Rosanna Hopkins, Ross Howling, Alison Jackson-Rainger, Adrian Kerr, Emma Key, Matthew Knights, Richard Legood, Paul Lewin, Leighann Manning, Eleanor Mansfield, Christian May, Jamie McCoy, Gareth Newman, Thomas Nicol, Laura Player, Leigh Rice, Katie Richardson, Roy Rule, Leah Searle, Lauren Seatter, Jennie Sinclair, Heather Stace, David Stewart, Lucy Summers, Ian Thirkill, Stacey Thrower, Nicholas Tuck, Leah Ward, William Ward, Rose Waterman, Christie Webb, Steven Wells, Harvey Woodyatt, Harriet Yeomans.

Millennium Volunteers

100 hours' service

Serena Brooks, Zoe Eke, Kirsty Ellis, Ben Fisher, Christopher Single, Lisa Smibert, Heidi Garwood.

Award of Excellence (200 hours' service)

Heidi Garwood

Nominee Award for Outstanding Commitment to Volunteering in 2005

Heidi Garwood.


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