Businesses once again step up to support Wiltshire's sporting stars
This event continues to go from strength to strength and it was a really special evening and we are delighted once again with how much money was raisedBaroness Scott of Bybrook OBE, Leader of Wiltshire Council
Around £50,000 was raised by businesses and organisations to help support the next generation of Wiltshire sports stars at the fourth annual Business and Sports Gala Dinner - £4,000 more than last year's dinner.
Wiltshire Council and Inspire by Wessex Chambers of Commerce co-hosted the event in the Atrium at County Hall, Trowbridge, following the huge success of the event over the previous three years.
The dinner - attended by the Lord-Lieutenant of Wiltshire, Mrs Sarah Rose Troughton and Sir David Hempleman-Adams, the High Sheriff of Wiltshire - was held to raise money for local Olympians and Paralympians, building on the success of the 2012 and 2016 Games.
Money raised from the night will boost the foundation fund, which provides financial grants to local elite athletes. Successful applicants receive funding to assist with training, attending competitions, as well as paying for equipment and transport costs to regional, national and international events.
More than 60 businesses sponsored and supported the dinner to assist the budding Olympians, Paralympians and athletes with world-class potential on their journey to success. The main sponsors of the evening were Mipermit, Landmarc, CGI and Qiniteq.
The fund was boosted by a one-off experiences auction and an elite raffle held on the evening. Speakers at the event were provided by Olympic Gold winning medallist David Hemery CBE and World, European and Commonwealth champion sprinter, Derek Redmond. Both offered inspirational words for the attendees.
Baroness Scott of Bybrook, OBE, Leader of Wiltshire Council said: "This event continues to go from strength to strength and it was a really special evening and we are delighted once again with how much money was raised.
"Wiltshire's sportspeople are so dedicated and everyone is enormously proud of what they have achieved so far. However, they always need more support to help them fulfil their potential and achieve the success they deserve and the grants that we can allocate as a result of this annual fundraising event go a long way towards helping them. I'd like to thank all the local businesses for their fantastic and continued support, as every pound raised goes towards helping our sports stars and rising stars on their journey to success."
Rob Perks, chief executive of Inspire by Wessex Chambers of Commerce, said: "We were thrilled to co-host the gala dinner again this year. We have experienced the benefit of forming a partnership with a local athlete and these events are the perfect way to bring businesses together with our local sports community.
"Derek Redmond talked about passion, determination to reach a goal, overcoming adversity and setbacks and never giving up if an athlete is to achieve ultimate success all qualities required of successful entrepreneurs.
"We can't thank the local businesses enough for the support they have provided."
This year's grant recipients, each receiving £1,000, were:
- Dan Bethell Para Badminton
- Lauren Booth Para cycling
- Hannah Brown Sprint and Wild Water Canoe
- Stephanie Clutterbuck Rowing
- Carri Ann Dark Equestrianism
- Tom Gale Athletics
- Stephanie Millward MBE Swimming
- Aaron Moores MBE Swimming
- Sophie Papps Athletics
- Cameron Sinden Gymnastics
- James Threlfall Skateboarding