Harrogate’s rising Leeds United star wins Yorkshire Young Achievers Award at Elland Road
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Founded in 1993 to celebrate the achievements of Yorkshire’s young people and raise money for charity, this year's award for Achievement in Sport sponsored by Leeds United has gone to Archie Gray, 17, of Harrogate.
Archie is a rising star of the midfield at Leeds United who is firmly following in his family’s footsteps and now playing regular first team football.
Archie’s father, Andy, grandfather, Frank, and great uncle, Eddie, all played for Leeds where he has been showing his great skills as part of the first team this season.
He joined the club at under-nine level and progressed rapidly through the academy, with agreement being reach with his school to allow him to miss classes to train with the first team.
He was first named on the bench 2021 before making his debut on August 6 this year when Leeds played Cardiff City at Elland Road.
Such is his success, Archie was unable to attend the awards, having been called up for the England Elite League squad, alongside Leeds team mates Darko Gyabi and Mateo Joseph, who faced Italy on the evening of the awards before taking on Germany on Monday.
There were two Harrogate winners among those presented with trophies in front of an audience of more than 350 at Leeds United’s Centenary Pavilion.
With McCormicks Solicitors of Harrogate as the principal sponsor of the awards, Harrogate also made its presence felt in the Special Award category, sponsored by GMI Property, which was won by Mike Riley of Harrogate.
While the awards are primarily for young people, the Special Award recognises the contribution of the awards’ most loyal supporters.
Mike Riley walked 206 miles from St Bees in Cumbria to Robin Hood’s Bay in North Yorkshire, via England’s highest peak of Scafell over 14 days to raise a massive £4,000 for the Foundation.
A fall on Scafell led to a trip to A&E where he was treated for an injury to his elbow, a badly-sprained wrist and facial injuries.
For the last 13 years he has been head of Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL), the body responsible for match officials in England.
Chairman of the Awards Peter McCormick OBE said: “Every year we are astonished, inspired and, frequently, moved to tears by the amazing stories of our winners whose achievements underline the depth and breadth of the quality of the young people in our region."
Harrogate’s connections to the Yorkshire Young Achievers Awards weren’t limited to the winners; some of the awards were sponsored by local names.
Among them were Achievement in Education, which was sponsored by Harrogate Town, and Personality of the Year, which was sponsored by Rudding Park.
Over the years, Yorkshire Young Achievers Awards have raised more than £1.3 million for children's charities in the county.
Due to the success of the awards, the Yorkshire Young Achievers Foundation was founded in 2010 to further support charitable projects for young people in the Yorkshire region.
The Foundation’s Trustees are: Peter McCormick OBE (Chairman), Nicola Corp, Martin Gerrard, Sonia Jones, Charlotte McCormick, Ron Miller, Richard Stroud and Zoe Webber. Its Patrons are Christine Talbot and Duncan Wood.
For more information, please visit: https://www.yorkshireyoungachievers.co.uk/