National recognition for Campbeltown’s Steve

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The secretary of Dalintober and Millknowe Tenants’ and Residents’ Association received one of the eight awards up for grabs at this year’s Tenants Information Service (TIS) National Excellence Awards.

Steve Byrne was presented with the Frances Nelson MBE Excellence Award in recognition of all that he does for the group, locally and nationally.

He collected his trophy from Scottish actor Gary Lamont and Councillor Anne Rendall of Dundee City Council, which sponsored his prize, at an awards ceremony and gala dinner at the Doubletree by Hilton Westerwood Hotel and Resort, Cumbernauld, on Saturday June 15.

The TIS National Excellence Awards, held in association with the Scottish Government, recognise the ‘outstanding work, passion and commitment’ shown by housing organisations, tenants, residents and community groups across Scotland’s housing sector.

The categories honoured excellence in everything from partnership working and scrutiny practice, to digital innovation and community regeneration.

Steve, who has been a member of the association for 20 years, told the Courier: ‘It was a nice surprise to be shortlisted and an even nicer surprise to win.’

The first person he wanted to show his award to was the group’s chairperson, Cathy Duncan. ‘She got me involved with the association and everything stemmed from that,’ Steve said. ‘So she deserves some of the credit for this award.’

Cathy said: ‘We are all very pleased that Steve has received the award – it is a big achievement.’

Steve said his award recognised his work on a national level, with the Registered Tenant Organisation Regional Networks and the Scottish Government, as well as in Campbeltown.

‘It shows that small teams at the beginning of the road can influence government policies,’ Steve said. ‘Some people come to us before they go to councillors or MPs.’

This year, TIS received an impressive response and welcomed high quality nominations across all eight award categories. Finalists were selected from a longlist of applicants by an independent judging panel that included representatives from Eildon Housing Association, Dundee City Council and East Lothian Tenants and Residents Panel.

TIS chief executive Ilene Campbell said: ‘The TIS National Excellence Awards offer a seal of approval for the most outstanding work across the sector.

‘Each year applications get better and better, and this year was no different. The exceptional quality of entries really shone through and this strength highlights the fantastic developments that organisations are taking to lead the way throughout the sector.’