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Inspiring women honoured at award ceremony

Anna Turley, MP, Sue Jeffrey, Vera Ridley, Mia Flood, Mo Mowlam, Linda Dickinson, Glynis Rodgerson, Kat Kempen and Mayoress Olwyn Peters. Photo: Stuart Boulton

Inspiring women from across Redcar and Cleveland were honoured at a special ceremony at the weekend.

Nearly 150 people attended the event at the Bellamy Pavilion at Kirkleatham Museum, near Redcar and watched on as the following women were recognised for their outstanding achievements.

Glynis Rodgerson won the 'Individual Achievement Award' for her work as a volunteer at Leonard Cheshire Disability’s Marske Hall and fostering 59 children

Kat Kempen took home the prize for 'Inspiring Others' for her work at a foodbank and community café.

Award winners Vera Ridley, Mia Flood, Mo Mowlam, Linda Dickinson, Glynis Rodgerson and Kat Kempen Credit: Stuart Boulton

Vera Rider claimed the 'Community Contribution Award' for her work as chairperson at the Gleneagles Community Centre at New Marske.

Mia Flood, aged 17, won the 'Young Woman’s Award' for her fundraising work in memory of a friend who died of cancer.

Linda Dickinson was named the winner of the 'Volunteer Award.' and overall winner.

Linda Dickinson was named the winner of the 'Volunteer Award.' Credit: Stuart Boulton

The overall winner of the Mo Mowlam Award was Linda Dickinson, 56, of Normanby, who has a son, Alfie, 17, with Down’s Syndrome and autism and another son, Sam, 18, with Asperger’s.

She was nominated by her daughter, Helen Humphreys, who explained that, as well as looking after her sons and two grandchildren, her mother raises money for charity, coordinates an autism family support group, is a volunteer advocate for a local family whose first language is not English and whose autistic son is in a long-term assessment and treatment centre in Northumberland, is a trustee at a charity and for five years gave talks to students at Durham University.

After receiving the Mo Mowlam Award, Linda, said:

I’m absolutely buzzing. It was wonderful just to be nominated. But your story is your story - it’s just your normality. When you hear the other stories they seem more touching and more rewarding than yours. I feel really honoured.”

– Linda Dickinson
Linda Dickinson with daughter Helen Humphreys Credit: Stuart Boulton

The Mo Mowlam prize was awarded by Anna Turley, MP for Redcar, who cited her friend, Jo Cox MP who was murdered last year, as a personal inspiration:

We have so many talented women in our borough and I hope the achievements recognised at the awards will inspire others too. The woman who really inspired me was my friend, Jo Cox.

I often think of her maiden speech in the House of Commons. She said, ‘there is always more that we have in common than that which divides us.’ The wonderful women who won these awards are proving that and making a huge contribution to our local community.”

– Anna Turley, MP for Redcar