Column: Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, praises local people going above and beyond for the community

LAST week, I opened nominations for the Denton and Reddish Citizen’s Awards which recognise local heroes who have gone above and beyond for the people in their communities, both before and during the coronavirus pandemic.

So far, the response has been phenomenal as 255 people have nominated 50 local heroes.

I have always known the people of Denton and Reddish are community-spirited, quietly engaging in amazing, supportive work on behalf of others. I have never been prouder to represent this constituency and I believe the efforts of our local heroes should not go unnoticed. Below are just some examples of their heart-warming work.

Andy Hughes is Denton’s very own Mr Motivator! He has been using his personal trainer skills to livestream free workouts six days a week. The impact Andy has had on the physical and mental health of families in Denton and even New York (thanks to the internet) is incredible.

Louise Park is also a personal trainer. She has been motivating people to keep a healthy, positive mind with her online support network, Strength and Soul. Her community in Dukinfield could not be more grateful for the lifeline she has provided, even as she has struggled with her own mental health.

It is not just adults who are helping others. Brooke Healey, 7, has ran 100km in four weeks, raising £2,000 for St John’s Ambulance – a brilliant achievement.

Megan Bowers, 21, has been making and raffling customised glasses, raising more than £1,300 for the Denton West End Community Library and Windsor House. Megan is a real credit to her generation.

Also nominated for a Citizen’s Award is Emma Ainscow (Wonder Woman), Carl Shaw (Spiderman) and the Dane Bank Characters. They have been using their daily exercise to spread joy to children while helping to raise more than £40,000 for NHS charities. Incredible.

Teachers Paula Arkinstall Cook, of Denton Community College, and Stuart Mycroft, of Manor Green Primary Academy, have also been going above and beyond for others. So, too, has Dr John Gunn, a hardworking, compassionate vet from Denton.

Thank you to everyone who has nominated their local hero so far.Nominations are still open on my website: Nominations will be assessed by a judging panel, with winners announced on a monthly basis.

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