We started to shape this awards programme last August, working with the Council and representatives from across the county. Spring created the brand identity, helped to define the categories, and set out a plan for gathering nominations.
This was the first year, but since we are optimistic we set a target of 250 entries.
Spring donated a website and social media platforms to publicise the awards, and gained sponsors including East of England Co-Op, Archant, EDF and DanceEast.
Nominations were invited for all categories between December and February; we took the message into schools with ballot boxes and communications materials, out to the wider community via the East Anglian Daily Times and online through Facebook and Twitter.
To our delight, we had over 800 nominations.
Meanwhile, Spring had the task of arranging the awards ceremony itself. We set the venue as Wherstead Park and worked to commission performers including The Oaks Primary School Choir, Farlingaye Chamber Group, Lily Ayers from Lowestoft Sixth Form and The Ukooleles from St Albans High School. We worked on the structure of the event, the menu, the awards ceremony and materials including trophies, menus, programmes, video loops and presentations.
The evening was wonderful! Finalists, VIPs, sponsors and other guests expressed their delight at the atmosphere, food and entertainment. Most importantly, all of the children were recognised for their efforts and this was particularly appreciated by parents.