Stars come out in Suffolk

STARS in Suffolk are today gearing up for a night of extraordinary drama, high emotion and tales of joy.

STARS in Suffolk are today gearing up for a night of extraordinary drama, high emotion and tales of joy.

The final touches are being made for tonight's glittering Stars of Suffolk Awards ceremony at Endeavour House.

And there is rising anticipation and excitement over who will emerge as the winners.

Hundreds of guests and VIPs will be attending the black tie event being held in the Atrium of Suffolk County Council's headquarters to salute those who have touched the lives of others with their remarkable achievements.

Evening Star editor Nigel Pickover said: “This will be a night fit for heroes and heroines, young and old. We are delighted that in these tough economic times we can bring a ray of sunshine and hope from Suffolk.

“There will be captains of business and industry leaders present, but it will be the ordinary folk who are the true stars.”

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Among a number of surprises on the night will be the guest appearance of Suffolk singer Laura Wright, who will give a performance on her return to Suffolk.

The 18-year-old, who studied at Framlingham College, shot to fame in 2006 as part of the classical crossover group All Angels, whose self-titled album became the fastest-selling classical work in history.

A member of the National Youth Choir, she passed her Grade 8 in singing with distinction and will taking up her scholarship place at The Royal College of Music in September.

In 2005, Laura won the prestigious BBC Radio 2 Chorister of the Year award which led to several performances for radio and television.

The evening will also be punctuated with poignant music and the inspirational stories of the 35 final entries, each shortlisted by a panel of judges last month.

Jeremy Pembroke, leader of Suffolk County Council, said: “Nominees and winners alike, these people are our most valuable asset.

“Their commitment and endeavours go beyond the call of duty. These are the Suffolk stories we should reward and celebrate, and we can all be proud and inspired by the successes achieved by individuals in our communities.”

Do you know an inspirational person? Write to Your Letters, The Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to

Volunteer of the Year

Penny Parker - Fundraising tirelessly for Guide Dogs for the Blind, including looking after future guide dog, Star.

Anthea Marshall - Ran a club for people with disabilities for 27 years despite a painful back problem.

Barbara Thorn - Chairman of Ipswich Mencap who adopted three children with Down's syndrome.

Carer/ Foster Carer of the Year

Zoey Ray - Gave up a lot in her life to care for a friend with rheumatoid arthritis since she was 15 years old.

Matt McLean - Devotedly looked after his ill mother since he was ten years old.

Sue Eastwood - Inspirational foster carer who has secured a future for many children in the county.

Courageous Child

Kyle Knights - Battled back from serious brain injuries after being hit by a car. He is fighting to rebuild his life after losing all his memories.

Conor Jones - Miraculous recovery since doctors said he would never walk again after he fell out of a tree.

Nic Anderson, Matthew Butcher and Adam Hubbard - Saved Conor Jones's life by giving him first aid and calling the emergency services.

Fire Service Person of the Year

Simon Thompson, Mick Lowther, Richard Clarke and Ian Brooks - The firefighters saved an elderly man's life with a daring rescue from a house fire.

Gareth Cossey and Chris Morling - Rescued a man from a severe fire in Leiston.

Denise Whiting and Charlotte Foster - Key members of a team dedicated to reduce crime and improve safety within the community.

Ambulance Person of the Year

Teresa Webster - Community First Responder who gave life-saving treatment to heart attack victim, Adam Dumesny.

Doug Armfield and Neil Flowers - Paramedics re-started Adam Dumesny's heart after a cardiac arrest.

Paul Gedney - Paramedic performed a rare operation at the roadside to help save a motorbike crash victim's life.

Police Person of the Year

Stuart McCallum - Police officer showed great compassion when helping the family of baby Luigi Askew, who was murdered by his father Duncan Mills.

Daniel Ormes, Regan Bradshaw and John Shuard - The police officers pulled a man who was intent on jumping from the Orwell Bridge to safety.

Ali Maidment and Ali Livingstone - Officers took hold of a suicidal man who had lowered himself off the edge of a car park and pulled him to safety.

Search and Rescue Person of the Year

John Cresswell - Set up volunteer coast patrol in Felixstowe after its lifeboat was scrapped.

Jonathan Harvey - Dedicated teenager who has flown up the ranks in the Felixstowe volunteer costal patrol since joining at the age of 14.

Wattisham Search and Rescue Team - Carried out emergency airlift of teenager who had gone into premature labour. She successfully gave birth at a hospital in Kent.

Best Neighbour of the Year

Joyce Mitson - Cares for a 90-year-old neighbour as well as her disabled husband.

Ted Craske - 82-year-old has saved two or three lives and is always helping people in his street.

Inspirational Teacher of the Year

Michael Hough - A “special guy” who inspires pupils.

John Richards - Runs after-school clubs at his house and is adored by his pupils.

Colin Tapscott - Takes children on trips away and makes them laugh.

Unsung Hero/ Heroine of the Year

Sheryl Southernwood - Single mum-of-three runs two clubs in Felixstowe and dedicates her life to helping children.

Nikki Reynolds - Has revolutionised lives of families who have autistic children in Stowmarket.

Jo Mayhew - Raised �50,000 for Cancer charities since her husband died of the disease.

Hospital Hero/ Heroine of the Year

Guy Nichols - Much-loved and respected ward nurse who recently retired after 41 years' service.

David Rae - Surgeon who has saved lives of man with flesh-eating bug and an elderly lady who says he is her hero.

Sarah Smith - Nurse who has supported a patient suffering from cancer.

Outstanding Bravery

Mandy Gavin - Pulled trapped motorist from her burning car seconds before it exploded.

Tim Walker - Police officer rescued three people from a burning building without a thought for his own safety.

Ryan Harris and Daniel Fiske - The Pcs helped to save the life of a man who doused himself in petrol and threatened to set himself alight.

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