THE Basingstoke Ambassador Award was picked up by a group of ladies who spend a lot of time promoting the town across Europe.

Since it was founded more than 40 years ago, Basingstoke Ladies Choir has pursued its commitments with passion, enthusiasm and dedication, both at home and abroad.

The choir has contributed to the artistic and cultural entertainment in the town and borough for many years and has promoted Basingstoke by being involved in exchange concerts with choirs in the Midlands, South and South West England.

The group has also performed at the Royal Albert Hall and sung in Basingstoke's twin towns of Alenon in France and Euskirchen in Germany. In addition, the ladies have carried out successful international work in Germany and Malta.

Ann Connolly, of Yew Tree Close, Oakley, who is chairman of the choir, collected the award on behalf of the group.

She said: "I was absolutely delighted to pick up the award for the choir because we work so hard to promote Basingstoke and go to so many countries doing this.

"We also do a lot of charity concerts and we are delighted to have been recognised for this as well.

"I could not believe it when we were announced as the winner.

"I saw so many people there that a lot of people had nominated so was surprised when I found out we had won.

"I really enjoyed the evening. It was brilliantly organised and a great thing for Basingstoke to have."