This September sees the first ever Candlelighters Awards in association with Vista. This brand new event looks to recognise the people who make a real difference in the fight against children’s cancer across our region. Emmerdale star, Matthew Wolfenden is set to host the ceremony which will take place during the afternoon of the 9th September at Elland Road in Leeds.

Matt shows his support on set at The Woolpack
Matt shows his support on set at The Woolpack

Matthew said “It’s during Children’s Cancer Awareness month and I really wanted to do something to support Candlelighters as they raise awareness of the childhood disease throughout September. Hosting the Awards was the perfect way to do just that! Given my recent cancer storyline in Emmerdale I have had to research the impact of cancer heavily, and appreciate, in some way, what patients go through. When that patient is a child, the diagnosis must be that much more difficult.”

“I am really looking forward to being involved in what promises to be a fantastic event recognising some amazing people, companies and groups. Candlelighters is a great Yorkshire charity and as a Yorkshire lad I am really proud to get behind it!”

This week, a judging panel made up of Candlelighters representatives, their Patron Lady Ingilby and Vicky Idle from Vista, the headline sponsor, met to shortlist the finalists.

Vicky Idle commented “It was great to be involved in drawing up the shortlist for the Candlelighters Awards, it was incredibly humbling to hear the lengths people have gone to in order to support the charity and we are really looking forward to seeing these efforts being recognised in September.”

“Vista have been supporting Candlelighters for almost a year now, with the events being the pinnacle of the relationship. I have no doubt the event will be the first of many, celebrating the amazing people of Yorkshire.”

A huge range of nominations were received by the charity. Daniel White has been running numerous races for the charity dressed as a Stormtrooper; Bill Desmond of York has been organising collections in the local area for around 30 years; a team from Wakefield walked nonstop over two days in memory of children’s cancer patient Holly Price; two teams have tackled European Banger Rallies, one dressed as the Queen and Prince Philip along with their entourage! The list goes on…

Kate Goldring, Fundraising Manager at the charity said “The nominations have been amazing and it has been great to see so many people get behind this, the first ever Candlelighters Awards. Already we have so many people to thank including our headline sponsors Vista, all our other sponsors and guests on the day, the nominees and of course now Matthew Wolfenden.”

“We were so thrilled Matt could get involved, he has been talking to us for some time about ways to support and the Candlelighters Awards seemed like the perfect opportunity. A big thank you to him for his time and commitment to Candlelighters.”

Candlelighters has been supporting families affected by children’s cancer in Yorkshire for over 40 years and now need to raise over £1.5m each year to maintain their services. In Yorkshire alone around 150 children are diagnosed with cancer each year. Candlelighters exists to offer family support, invest in the wards at Leeds Children’s Hospital and invest in research into the causes and potential future treatments of children’s cancer.

The Candlelighters Awards will take place on September 9th from 11.00 am at the Centenary Pavilions Elland Road. Limited tickets are available for the event and award sponsorship can be discussed with the Candlelighters team. Simply call 0113 3229283 to find out more or e-mail or visit the website

The Candlelighters Awards take place on the 9th September at Elland Road
The Candlelighters Awards take place on the 9th September at Elland Road

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