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Thursday, November 5, 1998 Published at 17:09 GMT


Boy wonders win bravery award

George and John: Fancy footwork stopped a mugger

Two boy heroes who tackled a 6ft mugger have received an award for bravery.

The BBC's June Kelly: "It was all about team work"
George Ball and John McMahon, both nine, from Fulham, London, chased the man who had snatched a 3,000 watch from a young woman and tackled him.

After a brief struggle he fled, dropping the gold Cartier watch which the boys then returned to its amazed owner.

In recognition of their courageous act, they received the Champion Children Award for Bravery at a ceremony in London's Savoy Hotel.

George described how they apprehended the man by cornering him, then grabbing his legs to trip him up.

John admitted he had been scared because the man was nearly twice their size.

[ image: Jake Bonsall: Talking drugs]
Jake Bonsall: Talking drugs
The 21st annual awards, sponsored by German sweet manufacturers Haribo in aid of UNICEF, were made to children in several categories.

Charlotte Church, aged 12, from Llandaff near Cardiff, was given an award for her outstanding vocal talent which she recently aired at London's Royal Albert Hall.

And she has just finished recording an album called Voice of an Angel, to be released on Monday.

Nine-year-old Kayleigh Hill from Wigan was rewarded for her considerable sporting achievements, which include 31 track and field medals and 14 for cross country.

She is also the north-east England under-10 and under-12 skiing champion.

[ image: Ruth Bampton: Triumph over adversity]
Ruth Bampton: Triumph over adversity
Winner of the Triumph Over Adversity award was Ruth Bampton, 15, from Heighington in Lincolnshire, who was born with her left forearm and hand missing.

After being talent-spotted by the Great Britain Amputee Les Autres squad last year, she looks set to represent the UK at the year 2000 Para-Olympics in Sydney.

The Young Carer category was won by 14-year-old Jake Bonsall, who set up a youth group on his own initiative in Sheffield's Manor Estate - branded the worst estate in the UK - to counteract vandalism and drug-abuse among children his own age.

Finally, Candice Greatbanks, 15, from Astley, Manchester, received an award for her contribution to the arts.

She is a talented ballerina who has passed 20 exams with honours and has already been accepted for the Royal Ballet School.

The awards were presented at an event hosted by Children's BBC presenters Tim Vincent and Kirsten O'Brien.

Also in attendance were the Duchess of Kent, actress Helen Mirren, Great Britain javelin star Tessa Sanderson and Gladiators Hunter and Rhino.

The event was recorded by the BBC for a programme to be broadcast during Christmas week.

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