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Active Suffolk Awards 2023

Sometime ago I received an email from one of the event organisers from Active Suffolk with the fantastic news that Peter had been nominated - and selected - for an award: here is the relevant paragraph from that email:


“After learning about Peter's story (and yours), I submitted a nomination for the Active Change Award at this year’s Active Suffolk Awards and I am very pleased to inform you that he has been successfully chosen as this year’s winner! The Active Suffolk team are keen to keep this as a secret but would like to invite Peter, yourself and two other guests along to enjoy the award ceremony which is taking place on Friday 17th November at Trinity Park in Ipswich.”


The definition of the Active Change award is: that " celebrates an individual of any age who participates in physical activity, movement or sport despite adversity due to poor health, having to manage a long-term condition or dealing with significant hardship, challenges and obstacles in life."



As those of you who know me well, you can only imagine the effort involved for me in keeping this quiet was immense.  However, once the award become public knowledge, I was able to splatter this story across Facebook and other platforms, like a crazed Jackson Pollock let loose on social media.  But, for those who don’t have an obsessive relationship with Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, particularly if they live in Wickham Market, this write up is for you.


I would start be saying that Trinity Park knows how to host a party!  It was almost BAFTA-esque in status with the round tables, the lights, the glitter and glitz and the free champagne, perfect for the tee-totals in our party. 


I think we all had a tear in our eyes when Peter’s name was called to collect his award but the over-riding emotion for me, certainly, was one of huge pride.  A random Shakespeare quote entered my head (as do many random things):


“Why, man, he doth bestride the narrow world

 Like a Colossus, and we petty men

 Walk under his huge legs and peep about…”


Sometimes it feels to me as if Peter bestrides his dementia monster like a Colossus and all we can do is look up in awe.  None of us really knows what Peter’s lived experience is as his determination to be a showman remains so strong, but I think we all acknowledge that it takes courage, bravery and an indefatigable energy to do the things that he does.


I often think about the description Peter gives as "being like a horse with blinkers on, only able to see the path immediately ahead (of him)".  I am not sure I would be able to move as freely and as joyously as he does if I were the wearer of such blinkers.


So, huge congratulations to our very own Friston Colossus and many thanks to all at Active Suffolk for taking the time and trouble to find out all about Peter and to honour him with this award.

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