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We are looking for Community Projects and Community Buildings which show that your village is a good place for everybody to live and which exhibit a high degree of volunteer involvement.

We are particularly interested in projects which:

  • are making a long term difference to your community
  • make the best use of local community assets
  • support vulnerable and disadvantaged people of all ages

Projects should be current and must not have been entered before, unless enhancement has been carried out.

How to enter:

The Achievement Awards are open to any community with a population of 15 000 or less.

Any resident may complete the entry form, but they should notify the Town Council, Parish Council or Parish Meeting of their intention to do so.

What are we looking for?

Entrants will receive a visit and will be asked to give a brief presentation to the judges. This may include a tour around the village, informal discussion or a more formal presentation.

The judges will be looking for socially inclusive, caring, vibrant communities with local initiatives that enhance the quality of life for residents of all ages.

Points will be awarded for:

  • the content of the written submission
  • the benefit of the project to the community and the quality of its delivery
  • community spirit and enthusiasm in evidence during their visit

The judges are independent volunteers who give their time freely.

Entry procedure:

  • Please fill in the attached form and send a written submission of no more than one side of A4 paper. Entries may be hand written or typed, but it would be helpful if they were returned by e mail wherever possible.
  • Supporting evidence should be shown to the judges on arrival
  • Please send entries to patcrane33@gmail.com or to Achievement Awards, 33 Parkstone Road, Desford, Leics LE9 9HY
  • Closing date is Friday 6th May 2016. Judging will take place between June 13th and 24th
  • The results will be announced at a Presentation Evening in the autumn
  • Finally ... anyone requiring guidance should contact Pat Crane on 01455 823537 or patcrane33@gmail.com

Good luck!

No village has everything, but we believe that every village has something

RCC Village & Community Achievement Awards 2015

The 300 year Old Ravenstone Hopsital and Bagworth Village Hall win RCC (Leics. & Rutland) Achievement Awards 2015

Sponsored by:- Tarratt Jewellers of Leicester

The presentation of the RCC Achievement Awards took place in conjunction with the RCC AGM, held on Thursday 17th September, at Birstall Golf Club, where the RCC President, Jennifer, Lady Gretton presented the awards.

There were 23 entries submitted, 5 Community Halls and 18 Community projects. 10 Community Projects received Highly Commended and 3 Commended.

The Community Hall winner was Bagworth Village Hall, which was a1932 Miners Institute that fell into disrepair. They rebuilt the hall from scratch in just over a year with a Big Lottery grant of £1/3 million. It is now a thriving community centre and a venue for all.

The Community Projects Winner was Ravenstone Hospital, a grade 2 listed building, providing a warden controlled home for 25 single ladies, which is 300 years old and run by voluntary trustees. They have also modernised the building internally and keep the grounds in impeccable order. Their 300 year anniversary project started 4 years ago to mark the 300th anniversary of the foundation of the almshouses. A Heritage Lottery Grant was obtained. Events included a community thanksgiving service, an Edwardian tea party, Princess Alexandra and Lady Gretton came to tea in May 2012, a scrapbook, an exhibition, the restoration of the Grant of Arms of 1711 in the chapel, the publication of a book and a CD of oral history. The culmination was a play, written and produced to tell the story of the Hospital, with local residents as actors with 3 sell out performances outdoors. The celebrations involved many of the community in organising and attending events, including children at the village Primary School, the WI, local choirs and bands from the surrounding area. The chapel is open to all weekly and the grounds are used for the annual church fete. The public are now aware of the history in their midst.

Pat Crane, Chair of the RCC Achievement Awards committee stated "The submissions in this year's awards were of the highest standard we have seen and all entries should be congratulated. The difference between the Winners and the Highly Commended was tiny, so the volunteer judging panel had a very difficult task. "

2 Community Halls received highly commended, which were Stathern and Medbourne Sports Club , both of which are widely used by the whole community. The judges were impressed by the impeccable business approach of the 6 trustees with their 3 year visionary development plan. Heather Village Hall and Swannington Village Hall also received a certificate.

The Highly Commended Community Projects were Barlestone: St Giles church celebrating the 100th anniversary of becoming an independent parish, Barrowden Diamond Jubilee Book, Billesdon Neighbourhood Development Plan, Carlton Footpath Project, Diseworth Commemoration of Centenary of WW1, Earl Shilton to Waterloo history project, Houghton on the Hill HOT Friends Tree and Conservation project, Newbold Coleorton Heritage Group, Seaton & Thorpe by Water Tenor bell project and celebrations and Hugglescote: 50 trees for 50 soldiers project. Also Commended were Woodhouse & Woodhouse Eaves Litter Picking Team, Sileby Skate Park, Belton in Rutland Village Website, Framland 16 villages Community lunches with transport. Whitwick and Broughton Astley village magazines and Ibstock younger children's play area also received certificates.

Community Hall Winner - Bagworth Village Hall

Community Projects Winner - Ravenstone Hospital

RCC Village & Community Achievement Awards 2014

Sponsors The Melton Mowbray Building Society and Tarratt Jewellers of Leicester

Winners Appleby Magna

RCC Achievement Awards 2014

Sponsored by:-

Melton Mowbray Building Society and Tarratt Jewellers of Leicester

The presentation of the Achievement Awards took place during the Leicestershire Community Action Seminar held on Thursday 2nd October 2014 at County Hall, Glenfield where Margaret Bellamy Chair of the RCC presented the awards.

Pat Crane, Chair of the RCC AA committee stated "The standard of all the submissions in this year's awards was again of an exceptionally high standard and all entries should be congratulated. The volunteer judging panel were given a very difficult task to determine the winner and those that should be Highly Commended".

All entries this year were in the Community categories

The winner was:-

Appleby Magna, the Sir John Moore Foundation Community Project

The Sir John Moore building at Appleby Magna is a Grade 1 listed 17th century building and may be the last place that you would imagine would produce a CD such as the one, which was given to the judges on their visit.

In 2010 an Alternative Curriculum programme was set up to offer young people, who are struggling with or excluded from school, an opportunity to be educated in a different way, to gain qualifications, have work experience and increase their life chances. The Meeting Place was designed and created by young people, taking inspiration from the history around them in this magnificent setting. The philosophy is to follow the interests of the young people, whether that be motorbike mechanics or dancing. The team at Sir John Moore are full of passion and enthusiasm for this project. Although there are some paid staff, this is a vocation which takes up much of their own time.

The experience at Appleby enriches the lives of disadvantaged young people throughout Leicestershire.

Highly Commended awards went to:-

Barrowden & Wakerley Community Shop

Entered the Achievement Awards back in 2009, so we were anxious to see what was new. A completely new set of directors took over in October last year and have brought a fresh approach to this successful, not for profit organisation. Apart from the manager, the shop is run entirely by a team of enthusiastic and dedicated volunteers, including young people. Selling local produce where possible, there is also a post point, a computer corner and a cafe. They organise community events at Easter, Summer and Christmas – a true community hub.

Markfield Mayflower Club

Set up in February 2014 at Markfield Community & Sports Centre. It is a club open not just to the elderly, but to vulnerable people over 50, and to carers. They provide a weekly social time with a variety of physical and mental activities, speakers on many aspects of health and social care as well as topics of general interest. The judges noticed the ambience on their visit to the club – it is so much more than an evergreen club - "one of the best of its kind they have seen". Congratulations to the volunteers who run the club, including young people from Stephenson College.

Medbourne Community Awareness Project

Started after a chance discussion by 2 residents that, although described by estate agents as "an idyllic village", there was little evidence of community participation (apart from taking children to sports activities). A community day was organised in the Village Hall to promote volunteering and participation. All village groups were involved and it was a great success. A directory was produced and delivered to all residents and put on the website. Information about groups and events is now circulated via an email network and twitter. This is a really strong, ongoing way of getting the community to communicate with each other.

A further entry from Barrow upon Soar was also commended

Barrow's entry was weakened by submitting 3 projects, 2 of which have not been completed. The Neighbourhood Plan and King George V Playing Field restoration are both worthy projects and we would encourage them to enter each of these again when completed.

The detached youth project is an excellent facility for young people, following the demise of the County Youth provision in the village, and we commend Barrow Action Group for instigating the project and the Parish Council for backing it.

Entries are now requested from Community groups for the 2015 Achievement Awards and application forms are available from the RCC website or by contacting Pat Crane on colincrane33@aol.com

RCC Achievements Awards 2013

Results of the RCC Village Achievement Awards 2013

Community groups from across Leicestershire & Rutland gathered in the Hodson Hall, Loughborough Grammar School to find out if they had won an award in the 2013 RCC Achievement Awards.

Around one hundred people were at the school on September 19th to witness Jennifer, Lady Gretton JP, HM Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire and president of the RCC present the awards to communities winners and highly commended awards in the competition for their locally run projects.

The standard of all the submissions in this year's awards was of an exceptionally high standard and allentries should be congratulated. The judging panel were given a very difficult task to determine the winners and those that should be Highly Commended.

There are two award categories ; Community (including Cleaner and Greener) and the "Col John Hegg's" Village or Community Hall Award.

Community and Cleaner & Greener.

Entries in this category were

Appleby Magna Grass Roots
Festival, Blaby Community, Bottesford Skate Park, Coleorton & New Lount
Volunteer Group, Diseworth Diamond Jubilee Year 2012, Packington Community
Events, Queniborough Friendship Group, Somerby Vaudevillians and Thurmaston
Silverdale Play Park.

Winner who received a
"Winner's Certificate" and a cheque for £250.00.

Coleorton & New Lount Volunteer Group

Some of the Judge's comments :- What an amazing project to change two abandoned coalmine sites at New Lount and Coleorton into nature recreational sites available for many community uses.

Both sites are managed by the volunteer group led by John Macdonald Heritage Warden for Coleorton parish who is Chairman of the group.

There are a team of fifty volunteers who are assisted by two County Council Rangers who are on site at least twice a week.

There is a strong social programme of events to provide funds and bond the local residents and volunteers.

The management group have produced a professional and workable printed management plan to continue this project for the next three years and onwards.

"Highly Commended" certificates were also presented to:-

Appleby Magna Grass Roots Festival, Bottesford Skatepark, Diseworth
Diamond Jubilee Year 2012, Queniborough Friendship Club and Somerby

Community and Village Halls

Entries in this category:-

Blaby and District Social Centre, Foxton (Robert Monk's Charity), Groby Village Hall, Houghton on the Hill Village Hall, Packington Village Hall and Sileby Community Centre.

Winner who received a "Winner's Certificate" and a cheque for £250.00.

Packington Village Hall

Packington Village Hall dates from 1957, but has undergone a major refurbishment. It is an excellent facility for the villageand surrounding area.

There is a wide calendar of events: The "Big Breakfast", Village "Bake Off", monthly lunches for senior citizens, a summer lunch, a Christmas lunch, a high tea, a BBQ (and duck race) on Open Gardens day, a Horticultural Show, Harvest Supper, Centre Stage events. All ages are covered from the daily playgroup to the U3A.

The Judge's agreed that this was superb community facility.

"Highly Commended" certificates were also presented to:-

Foxton (Robert Monk'sFoxton Charity) and Houghton on the Hill
Village Hall.

Pat Crane chair of the Competition Committee said:-

" This competition continues to impress with its range and standard of entries
and continues to show how volunteers of all ages in Leicestershire and Rutland villages can really work together supported by the RCC to make a difference benefiting their communities".

Archives of the past RCC Achievement Award and Best Village Competitions

Follow the links below to see the reports and the winners from previous years.

Col Sir Andrew Martin Annual Memorial Cricket Competition

For information contact www.ruralcc.org.uk 0116 266 2905