Thursday 22 February 2018

PM to hail 'extraordinary' achievements of Pride of Britain 'unsung heroes'

Tilly Sawford, who has won the Pride of Britain Child of Courage award after she fell into a bath of scalding water as a baby (DailyMirror/PA)
Tilly Sawford, who has won the Pride of Britain Child of Courage award after she fell into a bath of scalding water as a baby (DailyMirror/PA)
Professor Stephen Hawking will have his career honoured at the Daily Mirror's Pride of Britain Awards
Lord Sugar with Pride of Britain winner Rhea Kara
Will Edwards has won the Pride of Britain Outstanding Bravery award

Theresa May will praise the "extraordinary" achievements of the country's "unsung heroes" when she attends the Daily Mirror's Pride of Britain Awards.

The Prime Minister, who will be joined by the Prince of Wales and a host of famous faces at the ceremony on Monday,will pay tribute to a host of winners due to be honoured.

She will say: "Their achievements are extraordinary. But not only that, through what they have done, they have also shown the tremendous bravery, decency and compassion that exists in our communities up and down the country."

Charles, who will present his Prince's Trust Young Achiever Award, will say he is "tremendously proud" of the winners and offer his "most heartfelt thanks for the noble contributions they have made to the lives of others".

Founded in 1999 and now in their 18th year, the glittering annual ceremony will be hosted by Carol Vorderman at central London's Grosvenor House. The awards celebrate the achievements of the country's unsung heroes.

With award categories including special recognition, emergency services, child of courage and TSB community partner - the winners come from across the country and from all walks of life.

Professor Stephen Hawking will be presented with the lifetime achievement award by the Prime Minister to honour his work as the world's most influential scientist and his extraordinary refusal to let motor neurone disease dictate the terms he lives by.

And Britain's Olympic and Paralympic athletes will be bestowed with a special recognition award after they rewrote the history books at the Rio Games, sending records tumbling and surpassing all expectations.

Team GB finished second on the medal table after winning 67 medals, including 27 gold and 23 silver - two more than won in London.

The Paralympians picked up the winning baton as they finished with 147 medals - 27 more than they won in London and way above the target of 121. Their haul included 64 golds.

Newlywed gold medal winning cyclists Laura Trott and Jason Kenny will be among medallists on stage to receive the award on behalf of Team GB.

Other award winners include eight-year-old child of courage winner, Tilly Sawford, who has endured more than 500 operations after falling into a bath of scalding water as a baby - suffering 86% burns.

And 24-year-old outstanding bravery winner, William Edwards, who risked his own life to save pensioner, Anne Wade, who was trapped inside a burning car.

The winners were chosen by a judging panel made up of celebrated figures in national life. Organisers received tens of thousands of nominations from the public while researchers discovered "remarkable individuals".

Lord Sugar surprised one award winner who had been told she was going to meet an art dealer, but was instead greeted by the billionaire businessman who handed her an official invite to this year's ceremony.

Rhea Kara, 11, has painted hundreds of pictures to raise £13,500 for research into Rett Syndrome, a debilitating condition that mainly affects young girls. She will be honoured as the Good Morning Britain Young Fundraiser for her work.

"I am really happy that I won the award, and I was really surprised that Lord Sugar told me I was winning the award," the aspiring fashion designer told the Press Association.

This year's star-studded guest list includes Sir Cliff Richard, Sir Tom Jones, Dame Joan Collins, Dame Maggie Smith, Sir Chris Hoy, Simon Cowell, Nicole Scherzinger, Louis Walsh, Dermot O'Leary and the X Factor finalists.

Take That, Mary Berry, Jamie Oliver, the stars of this year's Strictly Come Dancing, Jess Glynne, Richard Hammond, Jamie Redknapp and Harry Kane will also be in attendance, along with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and Lib Dem leader Tim Farron.

:: The Pride of Britain Awards will be screened on ITV at 8pm on Tuesday November 1

Press Association

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