PARALYMPIC medal winners Lauren Rowles and Becky Redfern have both been honoured for their heroics with a unique accolade.
Worcestershire athletes who shone at the Olympics and Paralympics in Rio this summer were honoured at the first ever Black Pear Tree Awards, a unique set of Worcestershire awards to celebrate success and achievement in the county.
Rower Lauren, from Bromsgrove, and swimmer Becky, from Droitwich, joined rower Alex Gregory, Paralympiic swimmer Claire Cashmore, and GB wheelchair basketball men’s head coach Haj Bhania to become the first people to get a Black Pear Tree Award, an initiative launched by World Class Worcestershire.
More than 110 guests attended the event at Evesham Rowing Club where the five sporting stars, dressed in their Team GB kits, posed for photographs and signed autographs in the clubhouse.
Redfern won silver in the 100m breaststroke in the Paralympics, while Rowles took gold with Laurence Whiteley in the trunk-arms mixed double sculls.
Worcestershire County Council chairman Tony Miller said: “These awards are all about celebrating our county and the talent that is developed and encouraged through business, our young people and our residents.
“World Class Worcestershire celebrates all of this and shares the county’s successes. It raises the profile of the county that we love.
“Alex, Becky, Lauren, Claire and Haj have been presented with the symbol of the county – a Black Pear Tree. We hope that you will plant these trees in a place that reminds you of the achievement that made you the pride of the county and the inspiration for so many people out there who have now taken up sports as a result of your performances in Rio.”
More winners of the Black Pear Award will be named shortly. People can also nominate those who they think should receive this unique prize which is open to individuals, companies and to organisations that have championed Worcestershire and represent the best of what this county has to offer.
To make a nomination visit www.worldclassworcestershire.co.uk and go to the Get Involved section.