TWO caring teenagers have reached the finals of a competition to improve the image of young people. Steven Langridge, 16, from Great Stukeley, has been helping to look after his mother since he was six, and Rudy Barrass, 18, from Needingworth, saved Somer

Steve Langridge

TWO caring teenagers have reached the finals of a competition to improve the image of young people.

Steven Langridge, 16, from Great Stukeley, has been helping to look after his mother since he was six, and Rudy Barrass, 18, from Needingworth, saved Somersham Girl Guides from closure.

The pair are among the 13 youngsters in the finals of the Clydesdale Bank Young People of the Year awards.

Steven was nominated by Headway Cambridgeshire, a charity which supports people with brain injuries, for his commitment in caring for his mother Jenny after she suffered such an injury.

Steven, whose father Colin works full time, also helps to keep the house clean and does the shopping.

He said: "I have had to grow up fast, losing most of my childhood. I feel this is a disappointment but because we are a close-knit family I do not have any regrets.

"A good thing that has come out of my mum's illness is that I have forged a strong bond with her, and the most satisfaction I've had is seeing my mum smile again after the worst of the ordeal was over.

"I'm quite excited about the awards but I don't mind if I don't win, at least I have reached the finals."

The St Peter's School pupil also volunteers at Headway, serving lunch and helping with activities.

Rudy, who runs the Somersham and Needingworth Girl Guides and Rainbows, was nominated by the county commissioner for Girl Guiding. She said: "I'm quite excited about reaching the finals because I didn't even know I was nominated.

"I've been Guiding since I was five years old - it is my life. It is something that once you start there is no way of getting out of it. You just get hooked and it becomes part of who you are. I became a Girl Guide leader at the age of 14."

Rudy is studying for her A-levels at St Ivo School and hopes to go to university.

Judges in this year's competition have been so impressed by the quality of entries they have increased the number of finalists from 10 to 13.

Martin Guildford, managing partner of Clydesdale Bank, said: "The entries reflect the richness of positive activities young people do for the community."

The winners, who will receive cash prizes, will be announced at a ceremony on Friday, May 19, at South Cambridgeshire District Council's offices in Cambourne Business Park.

INFORMATION: To find out more about the competition visit www.youngpersonoftheyear.org