Grab a slice of life

THE search has now begun for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough s top communities of 2007. The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Community Life Awards, sponsored by Calor in association with Archant and other organisations, were launched on Monday. Leaflets a

THE search has now begun for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough's top communities of 2007.

The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Community Life Awards, sponsored by Calor in association with Archant and other organisations, were launched on Monday.

Leaflets are being sent out to the county's villages and market towns, community groups, community buildings and pubs, encouraging them to enter and take part in an event which looks for the projects and people who help make a difference in Cambridgeshire.

The new awards replace the Village of the Year competition, which has been a popular part of the Cambridgeshire calendar over the years, and include the chance of sharing more than £3,000 in prizes.

The awards are also bigger than before, thanks to the generosity of the sponsors.

With support from companies such as Archant, the parent company of The Hunts Post, the awards organiser, ACRE has been able to expand the awards to cover more elements of community life and to offer better prizes.

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Cambridgeshire ACRE believes that every community in the county will be able to find a category within the awards that they feel able to enter.

At the launch of the awards, John Yates, chairman of Cambridgeshire ACRE, said: "We recognise that the county has a hugely diverse population these days and so we have designed the awards to appeal to as many groups as possible.

"We believe these awards have something to offer everyone."

The awards falls into three different areas:

* Cambridgeshire Volunteer Awards, sponsored by Cambridgeshire County Council.

These recognise the huge number of volunteers at work in the county who help enrich communities through a huge range of activities. The Volunteer Awards are a chance to nominate local heroes and unsung volunteers for their contribution to community life.

The awards are a symbol of the county's appreciation of individual voluntary effort.

* The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Village of the Year award is sponsored by Calor, the UK's leading supplier of LPG (liquefied petroleum gas).

For this award, scenic beauty is not important. What matters is community spirit and achievement.

The prize is £1,000 for the community to spend however it wishes.

* The final section, Aspects of Community Life, is sponsored by Archant and a host of other local businesses and organisations.

Aspects of Community Life aims to give

community groups and locally-run facilities recognition for the huge, positive impact they have on different aspects of community life. Winners will benefit from cash awards of between £200 and £500. The categories available for entries are: Children and Young People in the Community, Older People in the Community, Environment and the Community, Heritage in the Community, Enterprise in the Community, Learning in the Community, Community Pub of the Year and Community Building of the Year.

Alison Brown, Community Life Awards co-ordinator, added: "We have kept the entry process for the awards as simple as possible - we just want to hear about what community groups have been doing to make the best of local opportunities to enhance the quality of life for people in their community.

"We believe community spirit is strong in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. We want to recognise that and help communities celebrate local successes."

The winners will be announced and presented with their awards at a dinner event on September 4 at the Burgess Hall in St Ives.

INFORMATION: The deadline for entries is Saturday, June 30. Visit the awards website for guidelines and an entry/nomination form or request an entry pack by calling the Community Life Awards co-ordinators, Alison Brown on 01353 865029 or Julie Weekes on 01353 865032.

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