The annual Sports Ball took place on Friday 18th May at the Clayton Crown hotel, and was attended by close to 300 participants. Guest of honour presenting the trophies, was Troy Townsend, Education Manager with the Football Association, who leads on the education and development for “Kick It Out” - the programme which works throughout the football, educational and community sectors to challenge discrimination, encourage inclusive practices and campaign for positive change. Troy spoke about the ongoing challenge of tackling racism, and promoting diversity in sport and football in particular, and his words resonated with many people in the room.
The Vice- Chancellor, Tim Blackman opened proceedings with a short speech congratulating our students on their tremendous achievements in sport this year. Tim had been able to see our men’s basketball team in action a couple of times during the season, and witnessed their victory over Oxford University, which sealed promotion back to the BUCS premiership.
Numerous awards were presented over the evening, to the backdrop of a lively, and supportive audience. Trophies from external competitions, University colours awards, and players of the year for each team were presented as well as some special awards to long serving coaches, and student ambassadors/ volunteers. The presentations concluded with the presentation of the four major award winners, which were:
Sportswoman of the Year – Stacey Gaston-Monerville (Para-athletics)
Sportsman of the Year – Cyrille Thacthet (Weightlifting)
Team of the Year – Men’s Rugby Union
Captain of the Year – Zooey Perry – Women’s Handball