The Blues award is a chance for us to celebrate and acknowledge sporting achievements at the University of Bath; whether it’s fantastic performances at BUCS, recognising student volunteers, or giving a shout out to people that have been great role models throughout the years. Our sporting community here at Bath has really come into its own during the Covid-19 lockdown and many teams have come together to provide advice and relief during these difficult times.
The Blues awards makes up part of our awards season which has been taken online this year. For Blues, this took the form of a week-long social media takeover where the winners were announced- all leading up to the grand finale day where we crowned Team of the Year, Club of the Year and the coveted Sports Personality of the Year.
Tom Sawko, SU Sport officer praised the sporting community spirit: “Despite the fact it wasn't possible to celebrate our incredible sporting community in person, it was amazing to see so many people getting involved with the Blues awards 2020! Thank you to everyone that watched, liked, shared and celebrated their friends and colleagues over the week. Whilst we weren't able to get together, the Sporting community spirit was still very visible! Well done to everyone that won an award, and thank you all for your contributions!”
The online extravaganza kicked off on Monday 27 April, where Ribbons and Colours were awarded for students that have represented the University for two or three year period in BUCS and non-BUCS Sports. In addition, the Gethin John Bevan Club Member of the Year award was given to Adele O’Callaghan for her commitment to University Cheerleading over the years and her commitment to squad coaching. The next award of the day was Volunteer Coach of the Year and this award went to Ben Priestley who has upskilled so many members of Fencing. The last award of the day was the Ivor Powell Award for Excellence in Coaching and this was given to Juergen Klinger who was the Head Coach of Team Bath Judo up until his retirement in January.
Tuesday saw Honorary colours being awarded to students that have made a valuable contribution to sport at Bath, as well as Half Blues for those that have performed at a high level of standard in their sport. The day also saw two very worthwhile recipients of the David Vanderlinde Prize to recognise an undergraduate student that has succeeded in both a sporting and academic capacity. Congratulations to Yoyo Wong and Sarah Jackson for this achievement. We also awarded the Martyn Hedges award to Barry Edwards for his work within the Sports Science and Physiotherapy centre that works with all of our top athletes. Barry retires this year so we just want to take this opportunity to thank you for the support of all the student athletes and performance environment at Bath. The last award of the day was the Tugendhat Trophy which recognises an incredible progress in a sport they started in first year. Congratulations to Justine Hammond who has progressed from Cue Sports Novice to BUCS Champion.
Wednesday was a day centred around Full Blues. A Full Blue celebrates a students that has performed at an international level in their sport or medalled at the World University Games or Championships. This year, 11 students were awarded a Full Blue:
- Madison Jones, Lacrosse
- Kirsty Way, Trampolining
- Sarah Jackson, Windsurfing
- Alexander Batstone, Hockey
- Bradley Sutton, Modern Biathlon/Pentathlon
- William Ryley, Swimming
- Tash Pavelin, Netball
- Jacob Greenow, Swimming
- Tim Nurse, Hockey
- Imogen Allison, Netball
- Ben Jones, Tennis
Day 4 of the Virtual Awards Ceremony was all about Honorary Blues, which are awarded to members of the University Community who have made an outstanding contribution to Sport throughout the year. The first winner was Ron Stewart, who is retiring after 25 years of service this year. Ron has been the Sports Facilities Manager of the STV since the start and has passion for student sport will set a prescedent for many years to come. The second Honorary Blue went to Steve Egan, who in his role as Vice President (Implementation) has been a passionate advocate for University sport and has been a keen supporter of all aspects of sport at University. An honorary blue was also given to our very on community officer, Alisha Lobo, for her incredible work championing inclusion, mental health and harassment prevention throughout her time at University as well as within her role as Community Officer. The next Honorary Blue was given to Freddie Sherratt who has been an integral member of SU Sport for 8 years. He’s held multiple committee positions including Chair and has worked hair to make Swimming a stronger and more unified club. Chris Jennison also received an Honorary Blue for his work as Warden of the Blues over the past 15 years. He’s the one that ensures the high standards of achievements required for the awards are met. His passion for student sport has been second to none and we thank you for your contribution. The last Honorary Blue went to Adele O’Callaghan. Adele’s passion for Cheerleading has helped the club to develop and thrive and her commitment has seen Bath Jets competing at a far higher standard than ever before. Congratulations to all of you!
Friday was the last day of the awards, and was one filled with excitement for our SU Sports Team. The first award of the day was Team of the Year which is given to a 1st team that has had a high level of performance and achievement throughout the year. Congratulations to BUCS Judo Men’s Team who achieved an incredible 11 medals at BUCS Nationals this year and 97 BUCS points were earnt by their 20 athletes. The next award was Club of the Year, an award to recognise the success and achievement of a club as a whole. This years winner was the Mountaineering Club. BUMC has grown to record numbers this year and achievemd their best ever result at BUCS this year. They also continued to make the club an inclusive environment with something for everyone to get involved with.
The last award of the day was Sports Personality of the Year. This is voted on by students involved in Sport and is designed to recognise a student that encapsulates the spirit of University Sport. The nominations this year were:
- Joshua Hong, Bandminton
- Sarah Jackson, Windsurfing
- Joshua Yeoman, Lacrosse
- Laura Macro, Rowing
In the end, the award was given to Joshua Yeoman. Joshu had never played lacrosse until joining University, and through his determination, he swiftly moved up to the first team. He’s since representing the M1 for 3 seasons and is a member of the Welsh Senior Men’s squad. Josh’s playing and coaching contributions to lacrosse have been immeasurable and he is fully deserving of 2020 Sports Personality of the Year!
Thank you to everyone that got involved throughout the week and followed along on social media. For more information about the winners, check out the Blues Award Booklet