Ely shows that no matter what, 'heroes will always emerge'

Ely Standard reporter Dan Mason at Ely Hero Awards

Ely Standard reporter Dan Mason explains how the Ely Hero Awards have stood up against whatever challenge has come its way. - Credit: Adam Fairbrother

This year’s Ely Hero Awards come after two challenging years that the Covid-19 pandemic has brought along. 

But the event has not stopped shining a light on those who are making a difference to our communities, as Ely Standard reporter Dan Mason explains. 

The pandemic has shown that no matter what the circumstances what we can say, confidently, is that heroes will always emerge. 

We knew that of course, having been privileged to be media partners for the first Ely Hero Awards in 2017. 

And what a glorious occasion that turned out to be. 

Naomi Sherwood had, what my editor John Elworthy thought at the time, a crazy notion. 

We backed them, naturally, recognising that the role of a local newspaper must always be to root out the good news as well as shine light on some of the darker corners of our society. 

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It’s what local newspapers have always tried to do - and trust me, to perhaps contrary belief, journalists enjoy reporting what you might term the good news better than some of the rest. 

It is a journalist’s way of spreading positivity amongst society, bringing people together, a way of ensuring news is not always about those aforementioned dark corners. 

Ely Heroes was launched, then, against a backdrop of not whether or not it was a good idea (for clearly it was), but was it sustainable. 

Awards, as anyone here ever involved in them will assure you, is a difficult, challenging and at times thankless task. 

It needs amazing logistical talent, outstanding organisation, and above all team work. 

The fifth letter of Naomi’s name is, of course, an ‘I’ but with Naomi the ‘I’ is never to be seen. She is a team coach, team organiser, team cheerleader but above all, the ingredient that makes Ely Heroes above all else a team effort. 

As I said at the outset, the pandemic enriched us with many, many new heroes - but regretfully it meant recognition of Ely’s heroes for the past couple of years has sadly not been possible. 

2022 is when we put it right

The Ely Standard is thrilled to have been invited to be a media partner once again for this year’s awards and we are delighted to have played our traditional, and early, part in sponsoring tonight’s launch. 

(Thank you Poets House again for your efforts - they are always appreciated. And John promised the bill will be paid quicker than it was last time!) 

We look forward to featuring the 2022 Ely Hero Awards online, in print, and of course on our own Facebook page. 

To which can be added sharing the good news, too, with the 12,000 plus members of our Love Ely Facebook page which, as the title suggests, is first port of call for what I mentioned earlier - good news. 

Thank you again Naomi for everything you have done, for your commitment and a special thanks to everyone who has and continue to rally round you to ensure Ely Heroes is THE event of the year. 

To nominate for an award, visit: https://www.elyheroawards.org.uk/nominate/