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University of East London honours sporting stars at Awards night at Arsenal's Emirates Stadium

PUBLISHED: 15:30 02 June 2016

UEL's Cheerleading team called Sirens celebrate after winning Club of the Year (pic: UEL).

UEL's Cheerleading team called Sirens celebrate after winning Club of the Year (pic: UEL).

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Jason Leonard OBE received Honorary Award and Lifetime Achievment Award

Jason Leonard was given an Honorary Award and Lifetime Achievement Award by UEL for his service to sport (pic: UEL).Jason Leonard was given an Honorary Award and Lifetime Achievement Award by UEL for his service to sport (pic: UEL).

The University of East London honoured its sporting stars of 2015/16 at the seventh annual Sports Awards at Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium last night.

The event noted the achievement of students in the British Universities and Colleges Sports (BUCS) Championships and beyond as well as recognising the work going on behind the scenes.

Director of Sport David Cosford praised the progress made by UEL across a number of different sports before the first awards were handed out.

UEL's Vice-Chancellor John Joughin gives Jason Leonard his honorary doctorate (pic: UEL).UEL's Vice-Chancellor John Joughin gives Jason Leonard his honorary doctorate (pic: UEL).

Michael Wakefield (Sports Therapy), Bethany Bellamy and Jacob Hood (Sport and Exercise Sciences) and Mitchell Young (Sports Journalism) were announced as Students of the Year.

Barking’s Jason Leonard OBE was then given his Honorary Award and Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his successful playing career and transition off the field since retiring.

Leonard, nicknamed the Fun Bus, was part of the 2003 England Rugby World Cup winning squad and is his countries most capped player in history.

UEL's Men's First Football Team celebrate their award from Director of Sport David Cosford (pic: UEL).UEL's Men's First Football Team celebrate their award from Director of Sport David Cosford (pic: UEL).

He was awarded an OBE in 2004 and is only the second recipient of The Prince Obolensky Award and now does numerous work to support various different charities.

The Vice Chancellor’s Award for Services to Sport were handed out to Ruth Mwandumba (Sports Rep), Fern Crosbie (Dance), Frank Sackey (Rugby), Ciara Gormley (Hockey), Kane Taylor (Football) and Kate Adams (Rugby).

WinX Tennis received the Partner of the Year prize before Harry Blyth and Jacob Robinson (both Wheelchair Basketball), Emmauel Nartley (Judo), Niall Burton (Volleyball), Mercy Brown (Weightlifting) and Otesha Charles (Football) received International Excellence awards.

UEL's Aimee Willmott with her Mike Brace CBE International Excellence Award after an excellent year with Great Britain (pic: UEL).UEL's Aimee Willmott with her Mike Brace CBE International Excellence Award after an excellent year with Great Britain (pic: UEL).

The School of Architecture, Computing and Engineering claimed the My UELSports Award and Cosford’s gave his Director of Sport Premier Award to the Men’s Tennis team and Men’s First Football team.

Trevor Tamatave became the second recipient of the Zawdie Bascom award for his success with the UEL Futsal team while Aimee Willmott was given the Mike Brace CBE Award for Individual Achievement of the Year.

UEL’s Hockey Club celebrated being crowned as the Most Improved Club by having a group huddle before receiving their award on stage by Surridge Sport’s Charles Lord.

The Women’s Volleyball squad claimed the Team Achievement of the Year and Club of the Year went to the Cheerleading Sirens Club.

Chartwells sponsored the Club of the Year award and generously gave the winners a donation of £500.

Footballer Taylor offered his thanks on behalf of the UEL students and explained the importance sport played for him at the university.

Cosford concluded by wishing the UEL graduates good luck for the future and thanked them for their contribution over the past few years.

Before he called on all those returning in September to try and achieve even more for UEL in sport and judging the talent on show last night, you wouldn’t bet against them achieving just that!

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