INSPIRATIONAL people who have made a difference in the borough were celebrated by the outgoing Mayor of Basingstoke and Deane.

Councillor Dan Putty presented awards to individuals and businesses that have helped make the borough a better place during his Mayoral year.

Cllr Putty used his year-long term in office to focus and promote the community, young and elderly people and business.

He presented a Business award in the form of a glass sculpture of the town centre to Stephen Blatchford, the chief executive of trailblazing prosthetics firm, Chas A Blatchford and Sons Limited.

The company, in Kingsland Business Park, Chineham, is one of the UK’s largest providers of rehabilitation services to the NHS, Government and private healthcare organisations.

Over 130 clinicians work for the company, providing services including physiotherapy, occupational therapy and nursing and rehabilitation engineering.

Cllr Putty said: “It has clinical and rehabilitation provision to help and support people to live an active and normal life after losing limbs in service or accidents. We are proud to have this magnificent company in our borough.”

Stephen Blatchford told The Gazette: “We are very delighted. I got the letter a month ago and it came as a pleasant surprise. The Mayor came to us and loved it, and he was taken with what we do.”

Cllr Putty awarded three people with individual awards for their contribution to the borough.

The first went to Kanak Rajgor, chairman of the Carnival Hall committee, for his contribution to Carnival Hall and the Basingstoke Multicultural Forum. The 71-year-old grandfather-of-one has been chairman for five years.

Cllr Putty said: “He has dedicated the majority of his time to the running of the Carnival Hall. He is held in high regard by many groups of people who use the facilities in the hall.”