The High Sherriff of Cumbria has welcomed people from across the county in an award ceremony recognising efforts to enhance and enrich hometowns.

Individuals, voluntary-led groups and communities were awarded for their 'outstanding' services by the High Sheriff of Cumbria, Simon Berry, yesterday afternoon.

The awards come from the High Sheriff’s Crimebeat Fund which is managed by the Cumbria Community Foundation.

The foundation was established to give credit to community initiatives which help to make the county safer and more vibrant.

Representatives from 12 community groups attended the ceremony in recognition of their services.

The High Sheriff handed out certificates, issuing three recipients with the prestigious High Sheriff’s Shield.

List of winners include Ulverston's Cowran Estate, Millom Network Centre and Barrow-based charities, Women Community Matters and The Well.

Ending his shrieval year with a celebration, Mr Berry said:

“I have been bowled over by the sheer number of people that give up their time for key and valuable community roles in Cumbria.

"It is a privilege to have had this opportunity to recognise and honour just a few of them. Cumbria would not be the place it is without them.”

Andy Beeforth, Chief Executive of Cumbria Community Foundation, said: “We are lucky to have so many brilliant organisations helping to keep our communities vibrant.

"The High Sheriff Awards reward those who devote their time and energy to improve the communities in which they live and work, making Cumbria a better and safer place to live.”

During his year in office, Mr Berry and his wife Diana have done much to promote the work of county’s charitable sector, including hosting a ‘Stronger Together’ event in January.

Over 50 representatives of community groups met up to share ideas and build relationships to make a positive difference to the lives of people all over the county.