The Isle of Wight Radio Local Hero Awards 2017

Island Story – dedicated to these heroes, and the many more, who make the Isle of Wight a better place to live.

Emma Cotter, who overcame the heartbreak of losing her own baby daughter to help other bereaved families, has been named Isle of Wight Radio’s Local Hero for 2017.

Emma, and the winners of the 10 other categories, were recognised at a glittering awards ceremony at Cowes Yacht Haven.
Isle of Wight Radio listeners were able to nominate people who they felt deserved a special accolade for their efforts over the past 12 months.

Emma and her husband Colman set up Layla’s Trust in 2011, after their baby daughter Layla died when she was just 10 weeks old. Recently Layla’s Trust donated £12,000 to The Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity, which allowed them to appoint Madeleine Reilly as its first dedicated Family Support Worker on the Isle of Wight.

Madeleine will be able to provide emotional and practical support to families, helping them at home, in the local community and on the mainland when they visit Southampton General Hospital.

Emma said: “Supporting the Island community has unique challenges particularly if your child becomes seriously ill. Layla’s Trust is proud to help fund Madeleine’s valuable work.

“We first approached Rainbow Trust in 2012 to see whether they would be able to bring their services to the Island and now, after years of planning and negotiation, we are so pleased to have them here, and we are able to work together as a team for the betterment of our Island community.

“At Layla’s Trust, we work to support bereaved families after a child has died and help families who have children with life limiting disabilities and terminal illnesses on the Island. Rainbow Trust has over 30 years’ experience supporting families with a seriously ill child, through its teams of Family Support Workers across England. We felt that Rainbow Trust was an ideal partner for us, and together we aim to reach more families to help ease their journey when their child is very ill.”

Other recipients at the Awards ceremony sponsored by Wightfibre, included Anne Taylor from Lake, who was named Fundraiser of the Year. Anne, along with husband Bob, raised more

than £32,000 in less than 18 months for the Chemotherapy Unit at St Mary’s Hospital, to buy an ultra sound machine to help detect cancer in its early stages.

Other categories were Best Neighbour, Sporting Achiever, Inspirational Young Person, Emergency Service Person, Customer Service, Tourism Ambassador, Carer, Inspirational Leader and Make a Difference to the Community.
All the winners were given special praise for their sterling work at the ceremony, which was hosted by Isle of Wight Radio Breakfast Show presenters Paul Topping and Emily Wells.

Claire Willis, Managing Director Isle of Wight Radio:

‘We have been running Local Heroes for over 12 years now which is testament to just how many incredible people we have making a difference to the Island’s community. Isle of Wight Radio are incredibly proud to host the awards and give well deserved recognition to such passionate and selfless people’

This year’s Isle of Wight Radio Local Heroes:
Overall winner: Emma Cotter – sponsored by Wightfibre
Fundraiser of the Year: Anne Taylor – sponsored by Westridge Skips
Emergency Service Person of the Year: Olivier Ghesquire – sponsored by Long Lane Flooring
Best Neighbour: Netty Parsons – sponsored by Medina Food Service
Inspirational Leader: Ben Holbrook – sponsored by IFPL
Make a Difference in the Community: Team Pride – sponsored by Island Roads
Sporting Achiever: Ian Gregory – sponsored by Island Riding Centre
Customer Service: Barry Hindson – sponsored by Ascensos
Tourism Ambassador: Jo Richardson – sponsored by Red Funnel
Inspirational Young Person: Gayle Jackson – sponsored by The Needles
Carer: John Clark – sponsored by Charmes Care


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