Young Sports Volunteer of the Year

Young Sports Volunteer of the Year is awarded to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to sport as an official, administrator or volunteer.

With such a wide remit and so many sporting organisations in Lincolnshire, we have once again received three outstanding nominations. All nominees had to be under the age of 18.


Gemma Gray, 18

Gemma is a highly motivated and outstanding student in the 6th form at Skegness Academy. She played an integral role in the nationally recognised primary programme that runs from the Academy. Her dedication to providing opportunities for younger students at the Academy as well as from the local primary schools results in her given up her time afterschool and at weekends. Gemma has shown flexibility as a leader co-ordinating a plethora of sporting events; for example a year 2 /3 swimming gala, the National finals for sports hall athletics at the NEC in Birmingham and a Year 6 netball tournament. Over the past year she has assisted at over 30 events working with over 3000 students. Throughout the next year she has committed to running a netball club at Skegness Academy for the local community as well as being responsible for running a range of competitions. Gemma has also impacted on the sustainability of leaders going into train year 5 students to be young leaders at 18 primary schools along East Coast. She is also the driving force for recruitment within the Academy, helping to identify leaders and training them up to assist with delivering young leaders and events. She is truly an inspiration for young people who want to aspire to be sports leaders.

Also nominated…

Melissa Poole, 18

Melissa coaches on a regular basis 3 times a week at Lincoln Imps Trampoline Club and despite being only a few years older than the gymnasts she coaches, she is able to maintain a good relationship with the gymnasts and provide a structured coaching environment in keeping with the atmosphere within the club. Melissa volunteers her time freely, despite having recently taken her A Levels, finished secondary school and successfully gained a place at Lincoln University and there are very few county or school sports events at which Melissa has not helped. From numerous hours spent helping out at the School Games, to inter-school competitions at her former school and competitions at LITC – Melissa is there. Her contribution and commitment to sport and volunteering in Lincoln was recognised during the Olympic Year when she was invited by David Cameron to attend the Opening Ceremony of the London Olympics. She was rewarded for her work with the National Citizen Service, after being involved in a pilot scheme she signed up to help run last year’s programme. As an ambassador for the Youth Sports Trust, Melissa is a credit to her club and school, and a fantastic role model for young people in Lincolnshire.

Oscar Tierney

A key member of the volunteer team at the last two Lincolnshire School Games. Supported the Activity Marketplace as a Young Leader in March 2013 and was the outstanding volunteer in the team. Volunteered as a Young Ambassador at the July 2013 event again supporting the Activity Marketplace, this time taking a more active role in leading and supervising a challenging group of younger students throughout the whole day. Oscar also played an active role in the set up and takedown of the event showing a fantastic attitude throughout and being an invaluable asset to the team.

The Sports Volunteer of the Year award is sponsored by Branston LTD

Branston is a privately owned company, started in 1968 by a group of Lincolnshire farmers. We’ve grown over the years and we’re now one of the largest potato suppliers in the UK, with over 600 employees. And with sites in Lincolnshire, Scotland and the South West, we’re located in some of the UK’s key potato growing areas. We buy around 400,000 tonnes of potatoes a year, as well as growing some of our own, and are engaged in all aspects of the industry: from seed to fresh, processing and ready-prepared potatoes.

Simon Telfer, HR & Logistics Director at Branston LTD, said:

“As a business we know it’s important to also be a good neighbor and to help out local worthy causes. The Active Lincolnshires Partnership is a great local charity, which promotes healthy lifestyles and encourages local communities to come together. Sponsoring this event helps to celebrate the sporting endeavours of people of all ages and abilities and provides an opportunity to thank many of the volunteers who give their time to provide activities for local people.”

For more information about Branston LTD, click here.