Head of Campus and Higher Education Lecturer Hannah Cooper, in association with Inspire Girls Football recently received the "Highly Commended" award for "Initiative of the Year" at the Women's Football Awards - the biggest celebration of Female Football in Europe.
Hannah says "To even be nominated and shortlisted is an achievement in itself, but to have been placed second in the Initiative of the Year Category and receive the highly commended award, ahead of clubs such as Tottenham, Everton and West Ham, is unbelievable. The judging panel was full of some of the most distinguished professionals, and so to be shortlisted and recognised by them is utterly amazing. The awards ceremony was such an experience also. Sharing a room with some massive names in football and sport - Eni Aluko and Jamie Carragher were hosts, with other nominees and winners there such as Alessia Russo, Lauren James, Harry Kane and Declan Rice. I was also lucky enough to be seated next to Carol Thomas (BEM) - the first female to reach 50 caps for England, and hear all her stories about how female football was affected by the FAs 50 year ban, and what it was like playing in the 1970's once it had been lifted. It seemed so fitting that Inspire Girls Football, which is all about inspiring, developing and empowering female players and coaches, were sat with such a legend of the game."