At a glittering awards ceremony to honour Woking’s sporting elite and outstanding service to sport, Josh Casey was crowned Woking’s Sports Personality of the Year!
The Sport Woking Awards are an annual event which celebrate the borough’s sporting achievements over the past 12 months. The Woking Football Club captain and left back received multiple public nominations for leading his side to victory in the National League South play-offs, securing the club’s promotion to the Vanarama National League.
Speaking about the award, Josh Casey, said: “I’m honoured and humbled to win Woking Sports Personality of the Year. It’s been an incredible year for me personally but more importantly for Woking FC. It’s been a pleasure to captain the club. I can safely say I’m collecting the award on behalf of the players and staff who do an unbelievable amount in the community. Hopefully 2020 will be just as successful.”
The Young Sports Personality of the Year award was handed to gymnast, Jasper Smith-Gordon, from Woking Gymnastics Club for representing Great Britain at a number of international competitions including the 2019 World Cup in Hungary where he picked up a bronze medal on the vault.
The Trotman Trophy, another coveted award, went to Richard Grady, who earlier in the proceedings also received the award for Outstanding Service to Sport. Richard is one of the founding members of Woking Rugby Football Club, and since things kicked-off in 1989, he has devoted every minute of his spare time to the club’s development. Although serious illness has forced his retirement from the pitch, he continues to be a highly respected member of the team and ambassador for both the club and rugby in general. In addition to the rapturous applause provided by the large contingent from Woking Rugby Club in attendance, Richard received a standing ovation as he lifted the Trotman Trophy, presented by Sport Woking Chairman, Clive Moon.
The other category awards winners, nominated by the public, were as follows:
- Active Surrey ‘Community Project of the Year’ – Combat Sports League, collected by founder Ali Waheed.
- Activity Surrey ‘School Innovation of the Year’ – Barnsbury School, collected by teacher, Amber Hiller.
- Active Surrey ‘Coach, Leader or Instructor of the Year Award’ – Richard Buckmaster from Mayford Athletic Football Club.
- Freedom Leisure ‘Inclusive Sport Award’ – Michael Dey for his work with Surrey Wheels for All.
- ‘Outstanding Service to Sport’ – Richard Grady from Woking Rugby Football Club
- ‘Volunteer of the Year’ – Fezaan Azam for his work with Woking Tigers football academy, community fundraising and efforts to increase female participation in sport.
The Mayor of Woking, Cllr Beryl Hunwicks, said: “It was a great privilege to hand out this year’s awards and personally congratulate all our deserved winners. I’m amazed at just how much sport is happening across the borough, and even if you didn’t win an award, I want to congratulate and thank all our nominees for their efforts over the past year.
“Sport can open doors for people, create opportunities and is so important for health and wellbeing. I’d like to thank Woking Borough Council’s sports development team for putting on these awards and for doing all it can to promote sport in our borough. And thank you to everyone who works behind the scenes to help others to succeed. I hope you all had a fabulous night.”
About the 2019 Sport Woking Awards
The awards ceremony (Thursday 28 November), was organised by Woking Borough Council with support from sponsors Active Surrey, Specsavers, Freedom Leisure, #WeAreWoking, Sport Woking and Woking News and Mail. Adding to the profile of the awards, Eagle Radio presenter, Dave Wooldridge, compered the event and Signature Events & Décor helped light up the stage with their illuminated signs and in-kind support.
David Wooldridge, supported by Sport Woking Chairman, Clive Moon, led a moving tribute to Adrian Hardy (Surrey Wheels for All) and Arthur Barber (Sport Woking), who sadly passed away in 2019 but leave their mark on the borough’s sporting history.
Full citations and pictures from the Sport Woking Awards will be available shortly on the Council’s website at www.woking.gov.uk/sportsawards.
Winners from this event will be automatically entered in the Surrey Sports Awards, which take place in February 2020.