Football’s finest were recognised and rewarded last night as we held our Volunteer Awards which were once again supported by Chaplin Farrant.
Long standing partners to Norfolk FA, Chaplin Farrant were sponsors of the Awards for the fourth time with Director Mark Camidge being welcomed onto stage by Chairman Michael Banham in the opening speech to receive a token of appreciation for his support over the years. In particular, Chaplin Farrant's sponsorship of the Norfolk U18 Representative Squad during which time Mark was the Goalkeeper coach.
The occasion also saw the formal announcement of our new partnership with Norfolk and Waveney Mind. The mental health charity is Norfolk FA’s official charity partner for the next three seasons and represents our commitment to improving mental health awareness as highlighted in our new three-year strategy.
Chair of the Board of Trustees at Norfolk and Waveney Mind, Louise Jordan-Hall, was present on the evening and delivered a hard-hitting speech to all in attendance which highlighted the increasing impact of mental health issues throughout society.
The Awards were hosted by the dynamic duo of newly announced Chief Executive, Matt Carpenter, and Football Development Officer, Harry Diggens who entertained the crowd throughout the evening alongside special guest, Norwich City Hall of Famer, Darren Eadie.
The event saw nearly 150 people in attendance enjoy an entertaining Q&A with Darren, as well as an insightful and candid talk from the former Norwich City player about the ups and downs of his career and his own struggles with mental health.
Usually an annual event, the 2020 Awards were unfortunately cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic, resulting in last night’s occasion seeing winners from both the 19/20 and 20/21 seasons recognised for the fantastic commitment they’ve shown to the grassroots game.
With hundreds of nominations, categories were tougher than ever to judge, and the Governing Body recognised more people than ever before with multiple highly commended awards for deserving individuals who only just missed out on the win.
A total of 58 awards were handed out by Chairman Michael Banham and special guest Darren Eadie, across two formats: The FA & McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards, and the Norfolk FA Long Service Awards.
Norfolk FA Chairman Michael Banham commented on the success of the evening: “I was delighted that we were able to hold our Awards evening this year and I was really pleased with how the evening went and my thanks go to everyone who made it possible. It was an honour to meet Darren Eadie and also to listen to Louise Jordan-Hall and I am really looking forward to working with Norfolk & Waveney Mind over the course of our three year partnership.
"It really was great to be able to see so many of our volunteer workforce on the night and to be able to mingle amongst them, shake hands and be able to chat with them about the work they do and also to be able to celebrate their success”
Norfolk FA Chief Executive, and one of the hosts on the night added: “Our volunteer workforce are the lifeblood of Norfolk Football and so it was a pleasure to be a part of the evening and to be able to celebrate the success and achievements of those who give so much to enable people to play football. As well as the awards, the presentations by both Darren and Louise highlighted the importance of the new Norfolk & Waveney Mind partnership that we have entered into and the incredibly important work that they do.
"I don’t think Ant and Dec have got too much to worry about in terms of myself and Harry being a threat to their careers but it was a privilege to be able to host the event.”
A full list of awards and winners is as follows:
The FA & McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards
Club of the Year & We Only Do Positive Award – Costessey Sports FC
League of the Year – North West Norfolk League
- Highly Commended – Norfolk Combined Youth Football League
Volunteer of the Year – Chris Brown (Horsford FC & the Norfolk Combined Youth Football League)
- Highly Commended – Jackie Price (Fakenham Town FC) & Ray Ewart (Swaffham Town FC)
Rising Star of the Year – Callum Kirby
- Highly Commended – Harry Bland & Jess Newton
Match Official of the Year – Egidijus Amsiejus
- Highly Commended – Ben Green & Jaden Lister
Coach of the Year – Leah Newcombe (Wymondham Town United FC)
- Highly Commended – Gary Howes (Sprowston FC)
Project of the Year – Great Yarmouth Town FC
Grounds Team of the Year – Carl Nicholls (Stalham Town FC)
Club of the Year – King’s Lynn Community FC
League of the Year – Central & South Norfolk League
Volunteer of the Year – Philip Yates (King’s Lynn Community FC)
- Highly Commended – Shane Fish (Fakenham FC) & Duane James (Mulbarton Wanderers FC)
Rising Star of the Year – Luke Fossett
- Highly Commended – Madelaine Pitt
Match Official of the Year – Ryan Starkey
Coach of the Year (Youth) – Dan Henry (Costessey Sports FC)
Coach of the Year (Adult) – Martin Francis (Mulbarton Wanderers FC)
Project of the Year – Paul Neary (UEA FC)
Grounds Team of the Year – Nigel Armes ( Thetford Town FC)
- Highly Commended – Tim Hales (Mulbarton Wanderers FC)
Spirit of Grassroots Football Award – Costessey Sports FC U10 Eagles
- Highly Commended - Tim Sadler
The Norfolk FA Long Service Awards
10 Years’ League Officer Award – Andrew Dix (North West Norfolk League)
10 Years’ Club Groundsman Award – Colin Tungate (Martham FC)
15 Years’ League Officer Award – Paul Ballard (Norwich & District Sunday League)
25 Years’ Club Officer Award – Alan Meek (Thorpe Village FC) & Colin Tungate (Martham FC)
25 Years’ League Official Award – Dennis O’Brien (Norwich & District Sunday League)
The FA 50 Years’ Service to Football – Phillip Williamson, Mick Utting & Alan Meek
The FA 100 Years’ Football Club Award – Yaxham FC
10 Years’ Club Official Award – Peter Goodfellow (Earsham FC), Phillip Godfrey (Wymondham Town United FC) & Christiaan Partridge (Scole United FC)
10 Years’ League Official Award – Jack Smith (Anglian Combination)
15 Years’ Club Official Award – Brian Cook (Wymondham Town United FC), David Cleaver (Norwich CEYMS FC) & Kirsty Turner (Bulldogs FC)
15 Years’ League Official Award – Paul Roofe (Anglian Combination) & Vince Roper (Anglian Combination)
25 Years’ Club Official Award – David Page (Heacham FC)
25 Years’ League Official Award – Graham Jubb (Anglian Combination), Janice Garner (Mid Norfolk Youth League) & Paul Smalley (Mid Norfolk Youth League)
The FA 100 Years’ Football Club Award – Norwich CEYMS FC & Norton Athletic FC
15 Years’ Service to Norfolk County FA Council – Chris McCullough & Ben Casey
25 Years’ Service to Norfolk County FA Council – John Turner
Dave Richardson, Big Phat Photos
A full album from the evening can be found here: