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Golden girls Kelly Gallagher and Charlotte Evans named Sporting Legends at 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards

17th October 2019

Winter Paralympic gold medallists Kelly Gallagher and Charlotte Evans have been named The National Lottery Sporting Legends at the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards.

Winter Paralympic gold medallists Kelly Gallagher and Charlotte Evans have been named The National Lottery Sporting Legends at the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards.


The visually impaired skier from Bangor, Co Down, and her guide Charlotte, from Chatham, Kent won Team GB’s first ever Winter Paralympic gold medal at the Sochi games in 2014. Now they've topped a public vote to secure the title of the public’s favourite National Lottery funded athletes.


Kelly and Charlotte were crowned winners at the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards – which celebrate the inspirational people and projects who do extraordinary things with the help of National Lottery funding.


The ceremony was attended by a host of celebrities including Hugh Bonneville, Emeli Sande and Martin Kemp and will be broadcast on BBC One on Tuesday 19 November – the 25th anniversary of the first ever National Lottery draw.


Kelly and Charlotte, said: “It is a real honour to win this sporting legend award. National Lottery support has been instrumental in our success


“The Sporting Legend category of the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards was a real ‘who’s who of sport. To be mentioned in the same breath as some of these legends was one thing but to come out on top is just incredible. We would like to thank everyone who voted for us and say a special thank you to National Lottery players whose play make all this possible.”

Host and former Strictly Come Dancing Champion, Ore Oduba, said:

“Every week National Lottery players raise £30 million for good causes and that funding is invested in life changing projects around the UK. There are thousands of ordinary people doing extraordinary things with National Lottery funding within communities across the country.

“The 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards are a chance to say thank you to those that really deserve it after doing so much for their communities over the last 25 years, personally it’s a real honour to be a part of the celebrations especially in such a landmark year. These winners are all truly inspiring.”


Since National Lottery funding for Olympic and Paralympic sport started in 1997, UK athletes have won an incredible 864 medals including the Winter Paralympic gold won by Kelly and Charlotte.

Kelly has had a stellar alpine skiing career amassing six World Championship medals. In 2014, Kelly and Charlotte were both awarded MBE’s in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.


Through support from National Lottery funding, their success came with access to the World Class Performance Programme which includes support from the world’s finest coaches, state of the art medical assistance, access to cutting edge technology and the opportunity to concentrate solely on training and competing.

The National Lottery Awards recognise and celebrate the difference that Lottery-funded organisations, both large and small, make to local communities the length and breadth of the UK.

National Lottery players have raised more than £40 billion for good causes in the areas of arts, sport, heritage and community over the past 25 years. More than 565,000 National Lottery grants have been awarded since 1994, the equivalent of around 200 life-changing projects in every UK postcode district helping to strengthen communities, deliver sporting success, protect the environment, unleash local creative talent and look after the elderly and those at risk.

For more information go to www.lotterygoodcauses.org.uk/awards
You can also follow the campaign on Twitter: hashtag #NLAwards.


The full shortlist of athletes who where shortlisted for the title of The National Lottery’s Sporting Legend were:

Nicola Adams - Boxing

Sir Ben Ainslie – Sailing

Sir Mo Farah - Athletics

Kelly Gallagher MBE & Charlotte Evans MBE - Skiing

Dame Katherine Grainger – Rowing

Dame Kelly Holmes - Athletics

Sir Chris Hoy – Cycling

Jade Jones – Taekwondo

Sir Steve Redgrave - Rowing

Dame Sarah Storey – Paralympic Swimming and Paralympic cycling

Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson – Wheelchair Athletics

David Weir CBE – Wheelchair Athletics


Ends

Kelly Gallagher and guide Charlotte Evans celebrate their 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards Sporting Legend Award with ice skaters Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean.
Kelly Gallagher and Charlotte Evans on the red carpet at the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards

"This year’s Sporting Legend award goes to an extraordinary duo: One, a skier who overcame visual impairment to claim glory at the 2014 Paralympics. The other, her guide, navigating their way to victory."

Christopher Dean

Notes to editors


Prior to UK Sport’s foundation in 1997 and the input of National Lottery funding, it was common for athletes to work numerous jobs at the same time as competing. Now they are able to be professional, full time sports people.


At the 1996 Atlanta Summer Olympics, Great Britain ranked 36th in the medal table. At Rio 2016 they finished second.

The 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards is the annual search to find the UK's favourite Lottery-funded projects and people. The Awards are a great way of celebrating the ordinary people doing extraordinary things with National Lottery funding.

The 25th birthday is a moment to celebrate the extraordinary impact The National Lottery has had on the UK. Since The National Lottery began, over 565,000 individual grants have been awarded across the UK. That’s the equivalent of 200 life-changing projects in every UK postcode district.


We want to say thank you to National Lottery players for contributing around £30 million to good causes every week. The 25th Birthday National Lottery celebrations are a great opportunity to do just that.

Discover the positive impact playing the National Lottery has had on your community over the past 25 years by visiting www.lotterygoodcauses.org.uk and get involved by using the 25th hashtag: #NationalLottery25

For further information please contact: Ruairi O’Kane on 07788 612804 or email Ruairi.o’kane@lotterygoodcauses.org.uk