School secretary wins Lancaster Superhero Award

Lancaster BID has announced Judith Riley - secretary at Yealand CE Primary School - as the winner of the Lancaster Superhero Award.

Wednesday, 10th February 2021, 12:17 pm

Lancaster BID - which represents businesses in Lancaster city centre - launched the award in December, looking to find individuals who had gone above and beyond their call of duty.

Nominations were called for again in January, and Judith picked up the award this week after judges looked at each nomination.

Lancaster BID said that during the first lockdown and closure of school, when 25 per cent of staff were absent due to contracting the COVID-19 virus, Judith worked tirelessly to ensure all staff and families within the school were well with visits, postcards, telephone calls and small parcels of goodies for children.

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Judith receiving her Superhero award.

Her cheerfulness and upbeat attitude made a very difficult situation more bearable.

Not only was her support felt in school, but this extended to her work with Brownies and checking in on elderly neighbours in her Caton community; leaving care packages, notes, and cards to brighten their day.

Nothing was ever too much trouble and she would always make time to check that those more vulnerable in our communities were okay.

During this third lockdown and second school closure, Judith has been baking cakes for self-isolating families, sending treats to brighten up people's day, and organising virtual events.

Artist Sandy Gardner's Superhero wings.

Katrina Gale, headteacher at Yealand Primary said: “Every school and community should have a Judith ... and that's why she is a Superhero”.

Judith was surprised and delighted to receive the well-deserved award.

She said: "I was so shocked to see the nomination and that I had won.

It has been such a challenging year for everyone, and I just wanted to keep our spirits up in school and ensure the children had fun and good memories during uncertain times.

Yealand is a small community with a big heart and everyone plays their part, not just me."

Judith has chosen to use her £100 prize voucher towards a night out with the school team in Lancaster city centre as soon as the lockdown restrictions allow.

Tony Johnson, Lancaster BID Manager said: “We were so impressed with the standard of entries and it was no easy decision for the judges.

It really highlighted the generosity of the people of Lancaster and the commitment towards the local community.

"Every one of the nominees deserves the title of Superhero – it’s a shame there could only be one winner!"


In December, Lancaster BID teamed up with artist Sandy Gardner, who designed an exclusive print for them which was installed on the wall next to Boots in St Nic's Arcade.

The aim was initially to have people take snaps of their local Superhero spreading their wings in front of the picture.

But the current lockdown has made it inappropriate to encourage people into the city centre to take photos, so the competition moved online and nominations were invited from people in the community instead.