A London project whose rapid response to the Covid-19 pandemic gave vulnerable over-50s a lifeline have been honoured with a memorable London Sport Award on Monday night.

Open Age, who are spearheaded by Physical Activity Manager Jade Dalton, won The Health & Wellbeing Award, in association with Gympass, at the historic Guildhall for their inspirational work across the capital.

Open Age run programmes for local residents, aged 50 and over, across Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea as well as Hammersmith and Fulham. 

Their ability to stage successful exercise sessions online in the blink of an eye gave many a vital outlet in hard times during the pandemic.

Open Age edged past two other incredible nominations – the Harlequins Foundation and Social Action for Health – to claim the award this week.

And delighted Dalton said: “We’d never even been shortlisted before, so to be shortlisted was a big achievement in the first place, but to win the actual award is amazing. 

“We’ve been recognised on a smaller scale in a borough level, but to be recognised on a London-wide level is amazing.”

Iain Cassidy, CEO of Open Age, added: “I think it’s massively important that charities in the third sector are recognised but particularly given the last year and a half, that older people’s organisations are recognised. 

“Older people have faced a lot of issues and it’s great that the services are being recognised.”

Over the last five years, the annual London Sport Awards, in association with the City of London Corporation, has grown to become the biggest celebration of grassroots and community physical activity and sport in the city.

And this year’s showpiece event once again recognised, celebrated, and shone a light on the stories of the incredible individuals, groups, and organisations for their outstanding work across the capital, helping Londoners of all ages and backgrounds to be physically active.

Jas Genesis, Director of Fitness Partner Success from GymPass, who sponsored The Health and Wellbeing Award, said: “It’s been an amazing experience to be here tonight at the Guildhall and see all these incredible people. 

“Reflecting on what people have done across the last 18 months is so important to celebrate.

“For me, seeing what people have done realigns with GymPass’ own mission of making fitness and health universal. 

“Seeing these amazing people being recognised for that is so important and I’m so pleased we can be a part of Open Age’s journey.

“The award is a total credit to OpenAge and the work they’ve put in in the last 18 months. So many people have been doing great things and the fact that they stand out ahead of the crowd is an amazing achievement - congratulations to them.”

The London Sport Awards, in association with the City of London Corporation, shines a spotlight on the unsung community heroes helping Londoners of all backgrounds to enjoy the benefits of physical activity and sport. Find out more about the Awards and how London Sport aims to make London the most physically active city in the world at www.londonsport.org #MakeYourMark