Grassroots Awards winners 2021 1

Gavin captures the Grassroots Spirit!

GAVIN Harvey is the Suffolk FA winner of The Spirit of Grassroots Football Award.

GAVIN Harvey is the Suffolk FA winner of The Spirit of Grassroots Football Award.

The category was new for the 2021 FA and McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards – a year like no other after little football was played while the country was in lockdown.

The impact made by Gavin, who has Downs Syndrome, was felt massively within his Wots Warriors football team and also the wider community.

He posted daily football and fitness videos through his social media channels, showing people that it is possible to keep going through lockdown and how exercise can make a difference.

Ipswich Town FC even made a GIF of his half time penalty shoot-out celebrations and regularly use these on social media channels with the hashtag #BeMoreGavin

Two awards were won by the Norfolk & Suffolk Youth Football League – League of the Year and Project of the Year.

The two Coach of the Year categories are always hotly-contested – and this year was no different.

The Adult Coach of the Year was won by Clem Turner, who has been the driving force behind Unity FC – a club made up of players from diverse and disadvantaged backgrounds.

The Youth Coach of the Year award went to Stuart Gordon, who coaches one boys’ and two girls’ teams at Felixstowe & Walton United FC.

Jason Day of Bury Town FC was one of the nominees who was highly commended in this category – David Grimwood of Achilles Youth FC was the other – but he was the judges’ choice in the Grassroots Volunteer of the Year category.

The Judging Panel was led by Suffolk FA Football Development Manager Jodie Allard and included the following:

 

Jodie Allard – Football Development Manager of Suffolk FA

Amy Grantham – Non-Executive Director of Suffolk FA

Jamie Le Grice – Senior Supervisor at McDonald’s

Tony Bush – Interim Director of Active Suffolk

Allan Girot – Honorary Life Member of Suffolk FA

David Rose – Council Member of Suffolk FA

 

Jodie Allard said: “It’s always an incredible privilege and difficult task to judge the amazing nominations that we receive as part of The FA and McDonald’s Grassroots Football Awards, and this year was no different.

“It’s been an unprecedented year for football, and life in general, and yet the dedication and commitment of the incredible workforce that supports local grassroots football remains a constant.

“Never has there been a year of so much work for volunteers, with so little reward through actual football being played.

“These awards are a great opportunity to recognise the hard work of so many individuals who have used football as a means to support their communities throughout these challenging times.

“I would like to place on record thanks to our dedicated judging panel and our sponsors, McDonald’s and a big congratulations to everyone nominated as part of these awards.”

Grassroots Awards winners 2021 2

 

Suffolk FA 2021 Winners

 

Coach of the Year Adult

Winner – Clem Turner (Unity FC)

Highly Commended – Chris Hewett (Lakenheath Casuals FC)

 

Coach of the Year Youth

Winner – Stuart Gordon (Felixstowe & Walton United FC)

Highly Commended – Jason Day (Bury Town FC)

Highly Commended – Dave Grimwood (Achilles Youth FC)

 

Grounds Team of the Year

Winner – Tony Adams (Claydon FC)

Highly Commended - Steve Byford (Ipswich Wanderers FC) & Tony Robinson (Coplestonians FC)

 

Grassroots Club of the Year

Winner - Wots Up Warriors FC

Highly Commended – Lakenheath Youth FC

 

Grassroots League of the Year

Winner – Norfolk & Suffolk Youth Football League

 

Grassroots Volunteer of the Year

Winner – Jason Day (Bury Town FC)

Highly Commended – Chris Hewett (Lakenheath Casuals FC)

 

Rising Star of the Year

Winner – Luke Fitch (Bacton United 89 FC & Stowmarket United FC)

 

Spirit of Grassroots Football Award

Winner – Gavin Harvey (Wots Up Warriors FC)

Highly Commended – Lee Smith (Wots Up Warriors FC)

 

Match Official of the Year

Winner - Lee Wood

 

Project of the Year

Winner – Norfolk & Suffolk Youth Football League

Highly Commended – Mike Powles (Walsham-le-Willows FC)

 

It is planned to hold the 2021 Awards Ceremony jointly with the delayed 2020 one early in the 2021-22 football season. Details will be announced in due course.

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