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The History of CSSC's Awards

To recognise the spirit, determination, enthusiasm and hard work of our members, volunteers, associations and regions, we celebrate their achievements with our annual awards celebration.

It was in 1924 that Sir Warren Fisher Permanent Secretary to the Treasury presented to the CSSC a trophy to be awarded annually for the best individual performance in any sport. In 1961 the Centels Sports Club presented a silver salver for the annual award for the best individual record in women’s sport.

Both these trophies remained a coveted honour until 2015 when they were replaced by the Sportsperson Award to be presented to the member who has made a significant impact on a CSSC activity and sport, either in one particular year or over a number of years.

At the CSSC Council meeting in December 1924, Mr. Noel Curtis Bennett presented a cup on behalf of HRH Duke of York, to be awarded annually to the Department securing the most championships in the competitions, organised by the CSSC.

The Duke felt very strongly that the best means of promoting the highest standard of true amateur sport in the civil service was by fostering inter-departmental rivalry and enthusiasm.

In the 1970s the CSSC wanted to recognise outstanding service. So, during the 1978 CSSC Conference, we introduced a special honour to be known as the Merit Award. Given only to those who have demonstrated the highest meritorious service.

To ensure the highest criterion was rigidly maintained, it was agreed to restrict the number of awards given to ten per year. Winners would receive a unique silver badge inscribed with their name and year of the award, together with a certificate signed by the Chairman.

Throughout our history there have been hundreds of members who have happily given up their time and effort to help make CSSC what it is today. And have ensured our activities are enjoyed and go off without a hitch. Without them CSSC couldn’t begin to offer as much as it does for members. Which is why in 2007 we introduced, the Volunteer of the Year Award. Named after our former Chairman, Lord Turnbull KCB CVO, who first presented it.

Any volunteer is eligible to receive this award. It recognises volunteers who have made an outstanding contribution in a single year. It looks at both their input and impact on the organisation.

In 2015 we introduced the Innovation Award. This recognises an affiliated association, club, regional council, national sports organiser or regional organiser that has introduced an innovative project which has had a major, positive impact on CSSC.

Of the winners of the Merit Award, past and present, some individuals deserve special recognition for their resolute service and sustained commitment.

They continue to display exceptional hard work, integrity and endeavor year-after-year and sometimes for decades. To honour these unique and remarkable individuals we introduced the Fellowship Award in 2015. In memory of a former vice-Chairman we subsequently renamed it, the ‘John Whittaker Fellowship Award’,

In 1992 former CSSC Chairman Sir Richard Hayward presented this trophy for the first time. Every year since it has been awarded to the national sports association or national sports organiser that has achieved the most for its activity and membership in that year.

An early ambition of CSSC’s founders was to realise associations in towns and cities across the UK. In 1934 Sir Russell Scott KCB whose involvement dated back to the early days of CSSC presented this award to be given to the area association with the best all-round record in a particular year.

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