Control room heroes recognised at annual awards


The winners have been announced in this year’s APD Control Room Awards.

The awards - which are in their third year - are intended to recognise the crucial work carried out by those working in emergency services control rooms across the UK. The 2020 ceremony was held last week at the Jury’s Inn hotel in Leicestershire.

This year’s winners include:
- Helen Collier, Avon and Somerset Police (control room call taker of the year)
- Carmel Sharkey, National Ambulance Service of Ireland (control room dispatcher of the year)
- Carly Pointon, Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service (leader of the year)
- Paula Holden, Merseyside Police (award for services to the public)
- Martin Lonsdale, North East Ambulance Service (special recognition award for bravery and courage)
- South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Control Team (team of the year)
- Hannah Bird, Maritime and Coastguard Agency (young achiever of the year)
- Ashleigh Spriggs, Leicestershire Fire and Rescue (control room ambassador of the year).

Recognition was also received by Jo Sampson of Avon and Somerset Police (Community Champion) and Rich Weaver of Devon and Cornwall Police (the John Gilhooly Unsung Hero Award). The Lifetime Achievement Award – which is sponsored by the BAPCO Annual Conference and Exhibition 2020 – was won by Lorraine Smith of South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue.

Speaking of the awards, APD Managing Director Mike Isherwood said: “Selecting the winners from so many outstanding nominations was an incredibly difficult job. Reading the entries I found myself absolutely gripped from beginning to end by the amazing stories of selfless public service.

 “The control room community is inherently modest but, as a result of these awards, they are sharing their experiences. It’s clear they now have the confidence and belief to say ‘we deserve recognition because we do a great job’.”

According to APD, the 2020 awards attracted almost 400 nominations from more than 80 organisations.

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Media contact

Philip Mason
Editor, Critical Communications Portfolio
Tel: +44 (0)20 3874 9216