AROUND 700 people paid tribute to Newport’s unsung heroes at the sixth annual Night of Honour awards on Sunday night.

The awards, hosted by Pastor Dave Edwards and his wife Faye at the King’s Church, recognised selfless Newport residents who went out of their way to help others in the community.

Among those in attendance were Newport East AM John Griffiths and Newport East MP Jessica Morden.

Supported by the Argus, nominations flooded in for the three main awards categories: heart of gold, young person of the year and above and beyond.

The heart of gold award, which was presented by the deputy mayor, councillor Kate Thomas, was given to Lee Williams.

Mr Williams set up One Step at a Time, which redistributes furniture, clothing and toys to families in need for free.

The above and beyond award, presented on behalf of Mike Nicholson, strategic director at Newport City Council, was given to Carys Jones.

Ms Jones, who works with Improve Dot One, was recognised following her work on the Skinner Street project and helping to organise the Breaking Out Festival.

The young person of the year award went to 10-year-old Alena Griffiths, who has been fundraising with St David’s Hospice Care since her grandfather, Thomas Griffiths, died three years ago.

Since 2012, Alena has completed an 18 mile cycle ride from Caerleon to Tredegar House and back; climbed Pen y Fan; and had a combined 37 and a half inches cut off her hair for the charity.

Dozens of community champions from the four Community First clusters across the city were also recognised, including volunteers at the Pill Millennium Centre. and at Jesus Cares.

There was a wide variety of entertainment on the night, with Somerton dance troupes In Sync and In Force catching the eye.

Mike Nicholson even got on stage for an impromptu Islands in the Stream duet with Sarah Mountjoy, who stole the show with her impersonation of Nessa from Gavin and Stacey.

Tribute artist Rachael Roberts, complete with feather boas, then gave her dazzling take on Dame Shirley Bassey and performed Diamonds are Forever, Big Spender and My Life.

In a fitting finale, the church’s band led the audience in a rousing rendition of Ben E. King’s Stand By Me, with hundreds clapping along to cap an unforgettable night.

In his closing sermon, Pastor Dave said: “One of the greatest things that a person can do, whether young or old, is lay down their life for one another.

“This room is full of people who choose to look beyond all the rejection, all of the faults, all of the complaints.”

Hayley Corley, who helped to organise the event, added: “We are so glad that so many of the community came along to support the event and we look forward to them coming along again."