High Peak’s Grace Longden and Abbie Wood were last night (Thursday) recognised for their excellence at the 2015 Derbyshire Schools’ Sport Association (DSSA) Awards, held at Chesterfield FC’s Proact Stadium in front of more than 200 guests.
Cyclist Grace, eight, from Buxworth Primary School, was crowned Primary School Sportsperson of the Year.
She has raced in a number of British Schools Cycling Association events, achieving first place in the Under-9 girls’ category in events such as the Yorkshire Regional Hill Climb Championships.
Grace also won the Under-10 girls’ category at British Cycling closed circuit races at Darley Moor and Forge Valley and was the youngest person ever to complete the 34-mile Grindleford Goat Cycle Ride.
Runner-up and highly commended in that category was another High Peak cyclist in the shape of Annabel Parker, from St Anne’s Catholic Primary School, Buxton.
Also winning an award was swimmer Abbie, from Buxton Community School, who retained her Individual Achievement – Non-school Sport title after another superb year in the pool.
The 16-year-old produced a string of outstanding performances as she won a gold, silver and two bronze medals at the inaugural European Games in Baku, Azerbaijan.
The efforts of a number of other individuals from the High Peak area were celebrated too, with fencer Ellen Robbins-Wilkinson and cyclist Charlie Craig, both from Hope Valley College, highly commended in the Individual Achievement – Non-school Sport and Secondary School Sportsperson of the Year Award categories respectively.
Also honoured by being highly commended were dressage and athletics competitor Georgina Bailey, from Harpur Hill Primary School, in the Disability Sportsperson of the Year category, and Adult Volunteer Natalie Mills, of Hayfield Primary School.
Winner of the top award, Sportsperson of the Year, was Allestree Woodlands School golfer Bradley Moore, who retained his title from 2014.
Special guest for the night was shot putter Sam Ruddock, who represented Great Britain at the London 2012 Paralympics.