Inspiring Aberdeenshire is back

By Jane Cruickshank / February 23, 2021

From Aberdeenshire Council communications team – with photographs by Bill Emslie

We all need a reason to get ourselves out of the house to hopefully see something interesting and meet the people in our community. What inspires you?

Nominations today opened for Inspiring Aberdeenshire 2021.

The awards which are in their ninth year are there to recognise unsung community heroes of Aberdeenshire, those people who work tirelessly to support their community and the people in it, but who often don’t get recognised any other way. These are their awards; awards which demonstrate beyond doubt that it is our people who make Aberdeenshire tick.

There have been 8 awards in previous years, recognising everything from cultural heroes to green champions, and those who demonstrate outstanding bravery. For 2021 an extra category has been added. The Covid-19 category seeks to recognise the best of the community effort in response to the pandemic. As with each year, the Covid award and all others can be given to either individuals or groups. A full list of the categories is below.

Provost of Aberdeenshire, Cllr Bill Howatson said: “It is tremendous to see Inspiring Aberdeenshire coming back this year. I strongly believe that now, more than ever, it is essential for us to show how much we appreciate the role people play in communities across Aberdeenshire. What makes ‘Inspiring’ stand out from the rest for me, is that it is a platform to find our unsung heroes. Time and again we discover winners who have been working tirelessly for many years but do not get the praise they deserve; this is their moment.

“I encourage everyone to take some time to think who they might nominate. Especially throughout the pandemic, frankly we could not have done without our community champions and I hope there will be a category here this year to allow everyone a place to shine.”  

The nomination link is and will stay open until 5 April.


The Heart of Aberdeenshire Caring Award

Awarded to a person who has had a significant positive impact on the life(s) of a vulnerable person(s). Nominees will care for others, either through the course of their employment, for a family member or as a volunteer carer.

The Inspirational Volunteer Award

Awarded to an individual or group who have gone the extra mile by volunteering for a local initiative that makes a difference to the lives of others or communities.

Our lifeboat crew – responding and training in all weathers

The Local Hero Courage Award

Awarded to an individual who in the face of adversity has shown courage, bravery and dedication to helping to overcome a difficult situation.

The Beautiful Aberdeenshire Environmental Award

Awarded to an individual or group who is working hard to help nurture and enhance our area’s natural beauty through environmental initiatives.

Litter picks and eco-villages on Stonehaven beach

The Community Spirit Award

Awarded to an individual or group who have supported a cause or project which helps to foster a spirited, embracing and vibrant local community.

The Cultural Award

Awarded to an individual or community group who has made an excellent contribution to the promotion of local culture in Aberdeenshire.

Aberdeenshire’s Future Award

Awarded to a young individual (under 25) who have shown great leadership and helped to inspire and motivate others in support of a local cause.

The Covid-19 Response Award

The Coronavirus pandemic has given rise to remarkable efforts across Aberdeenshire in supporting one another during this time. This award is for an individual, group or community who have shown incredible resilience and amazing efforts in response to Covid-19.

The Inspiring Aberdeenshire Lifetime Achievement Award

This award will be presented to an individual who over the course of a number of years has made an outstanding contribution to a local cause, project or initiative, and is a true inspiration to others across Aberdeenshire.

The awards will be handed out at a virtual live-streamed ceremony in August.

It’s never boring on the boardwalk