The Creative Lives Awards - formerly the Epic Awards - are an annual celebration of the achievements of voluntary and community-led creativity.
Each year, we invite creative groups across the UK and Ireland to share their achievements with us, so we can give you a well-deserved moment in the spotlight.
We received lots of wonderful applications for our 2022 Awards and loved reading about all the amazing activities creative groups across the UK and Ireland achieved between September 2021 and September 2022.
It was tough, but we managed to reduce the entries down to a shortlist of 36 groups. Our judging panels then met to choose a Winner and Runner-up from each nation, the public voted for this year's People's Choice Award, the shortlisted groups themselves voted for the Peer Award for Excellence, and our EDI (Equalities, Diversity & Inclusion) Panel choose the Celebrating Diversity Award. We then looked around the local area where this year's ceremony was taking place, and found our Local Hero in Leeds.
The Creative Lives Awards ceremony was held at Aspire, Leeds on 7 March 2023, as part of the LEEDS 2023 Year of Culture celebrations. Meet our wonderful winners . . .
ENGLAND WINNER - Dadesley Crafting. Based in South Yorkshire, this volunteer-run group uses craft to combat loneliness and improve mental health and well-being, with members ranging in age from 18 to 90.
ENGLAND RUNNER-UP - Bristol Beacon's Different Beginnings. This wonderful project saw care leavers create their own album by taking part in songwriting, composition, design & production
IRELAND/N.IRELAND WINNER - Fatima Groups United. A Dublin-based family resource centre that strives to create wider access to the arts. Tonight we’re celebrating their Dance Till Dán poetry and dance project.
IRELAND/N.IRELAND RUNNER-UP - The Kindness Postbox. Based in Enniskillen, this beautiful project connects children and elderly care home residents in Northern Ireland through cards, letters and drawings that are posted and delivered
SCOTLAND WINNER - Sewing2gether All Nations. A brilliant grass-roots craft group in Paisley for members of the refugee and asylum-seeker community.
SCOTLAND RUNNER-UP - Newstead News. An ambitious rural community newspaper in the Scottish Borders giving dozens of villagers a chance to get involved and be creative.
WALES WINNER - Oasis One World Choir. Welcoming anyone seeking sanctuary in Cardiff, this singing group uses music to transcend cultural differences and foster a sense of community.
WALES RUNNER-UP - Urban Circle Newport. This fantastic youth arts organisation empowered young people to run their own Jamaican festival, breaking down barriers and prejudices.
PEOPLE'S CHOICE AWARD - Jubilation. Almost 12,500 members of the public cast their vote in this year’s People’s Choice Award, with Bridgwater Carnival’s ‘Jubilation’ pageant cart crowned winner! A magnificent feat of creativity, engineering & community spirit.
PEER AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE - Mental Inkness and Bristol Beacon's Different Beginnings. Voted for by the shortlisted groups, the Peer Award for Excellence is always special as it’s validation from your peers. This year’s award is shared by digital art gallery Mental Inkness and Bristol Beacon’s Different Beginnings project.
CELEBRATING DIVERSITY AWARD - African & Caribbean Elders in Scotland. A group for people aged 60+ in Scotland who get together, run events, offer each other support and celebrate the stories and culture of Africa and the Caribbean.
LOCAL HERO - Angela Gabriel. For her tireless volunteering with Beeston in Bloom, Beeston Festival and more.
The Awards have been running since 2010 - meet some of our previous winners here.