Awards ceremony recognises those working to improve community

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant

Inspirational people who work to make Tower Hamlets a better place to live have been recognised at an awards ceremony.

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant

The Star in the Community Awards saw ten of the borough’s housing associations unite to recognise the achievements of their residents.

Guests at the Atrium in Bethnal Green enjoyed a three course meal and entertainment from young musicians and a magician before the awards were handed out.

An inspirational resident award was handed out to someone living in each of the housing associations taking part in the ceremony.

The other categories featured nominees from across the borough, including the young people’s award for an inspirational resident aged 25 or under.

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant


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This was won by Sharmina Aktar, a Tower Hamlets Homes resident who is involved in voluntary community work across the borough and has raised money for a range of good causes.

It wasn’t just individuals who were nominated, either, with the Poets’ Corner Community Garden group scooping the environmental award.

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The final award of the night was a posthumous recognition for Tressa Bates, who helped to build a community spirit on the Bow Cross Estate. The trophy was collected by a relative on her behalf.

Thursday night’s event was hosted by Alison Inman, former president of the Chartered Institute of Housing.

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant

She said: “It’s an inspirational evening to be amongst so many people who tirelessly volunteer their time to help and empower their communities.

“Events such as this are important as they celebrate the often overlooked value of social housing communities.

“There’s lots we can learn about the positive power of community from the winners.”

Deputy mayor of Tower Hamlets Cllr Sirajul Islam, who is also the cabinet member for housing. joined her to hand out the trophies.

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears

The Tower Hamlets Star in the Community Awards. All pictures: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant

He said: “It is a pleasure to cleebrate the incredible achievements of Tower Hamlets residents.

“I would like to congratulate all of the nominees, finalists and winners who have been recognised, and express my personal appreciation for your community spirit.”

The winners

Inspirational resident award: Roy Byfield (Clarion), Jim Martin (EastendHomes), Aminul Hoque (Gateway). Abul Faiz (One Housing), Dilwar Hussain (Poplar HARCA), Karen Anne Osmonds (Providence Row), Janu Ali (Spitalfields), Samantha Ming (Swan), Neil Eustace (Tower Hamlets Community Housing), Serena Dang (Tower Hamlets Homes)

Young people’s award: Sharmina Aktar (Tower Hamlets Homes)

Environmental award: Poets’ Corner Community Garden (Tower Hamlets Homes)

Bringing people together award: Eileen Groves (Poplar HARCA)

Contribution to resident involvement award: Frances Austin (Gateway)

Special recognition award: Tressa Bates (Swan)

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