UNSUNG heroes from Colchester’s sporting community are hoping to be named the best in Essex at a glitzy awards do.

Active Essex has announced the final shortlist for this year’s sports awards, which celebrate the county’s greatest sporting achievements and the individuals and organisations which inspire residents to get active.

Three Colchester nominees have made the cut and are now in with a chance of being crowned winner in their categories at the ceremony next month.

Teenager Liam Winters has been nominated in the Young Volunteer of the Year category.

The 15-year-old uses his photography skills at running, sporting and charity events.

His pictures have supported groups including Castle Parkrun as well as charities including Tom Bowdidge Youth Cancer Trust and Colchester Foodbank.

Also on the final shortlist is Nina Crouchman in the Unsung Hero category.

Since 2012, Mrs Crouchman has been the driving force behind Rowhedge Coastal Rowing Club, helping the group’s membership explode.

Also a skilful fundraiser, her latest successful project is The Hut, a new cafe situated on the bank of the River Colne staffed by club volunteers.

In the Community Club of the Year category, Colchester Bootcamp is looking to see off the competition.

Run by Gabriel Beckett, the group has more than 100 members, engaging in volunteer activities across the borough.

Mr Beckett said he started the group to give back to the community which supported him through the lowest times in his life.

Olympic gold medalist Max Whitlock will present the awards at the ceremony on December 4.

He said: “Being recognised by your community for your sporting achievements is such a fantastic achievement and I look forward to meeting the nominees and hearing their inspirational stories on the night.

“I would encourage everybody to take part and cast their votes in this year’s public vote categories.”

This year three of the ten categories are decided via a public vote.

Visit bit.ly/AESportsAwardsVote to find out more.