East Ayrshire’s high street heroes have been announced, with locals being recognised for their remarkable work during the coronavirus pandemic.

Janice Hendry and the team at Yipworld in Cumnock came close to being nominated as regional champion, being one of the two highly commended businesses (the other being Coffee Press, Kilmarnock) that lost out to regional winners, Allan & Sons Butchers, Stewarton.

The judges of the awards said: “Janice Hendry and the team at Yipworld in Cumnock noticed that some local families were really struggling during lockdown. They applied for funding and provided local children who had grown out of items like training shoes and clothes with new ones.

“Although they work with a lot of local families, they contacted the teachers at the schools for any families that may be in need but not known to them. Janice, Robert and all of the team have been true heroes.”

The awards, part of government-supported Scotland Loves Local campaign’s High Street Heroes Awards, sought to encourage people to shop locally to aid the response to the coronavirus pandemic and highlight the importance of local businesses.

Judges reviewed nominations sent in by members of the public and whittled them down to one regional champion, two highly commended, and the rest of the nominated businesses and people were all designated High Street Heroes. A full list of those nominated High Street Heroes follows at the bottom of this article.

Councillor Jim Roberts, Cabinet member for Economy and Infrastructure, East Ayrshire Council said: “[These] businesses represent a much wider pool of fantastic, resourceful and innovative business people throughout the area who really pulled together at a time which has been incredibly difficult for everyone.

“Like so many they made huge efforts, at considerable personal cost in time, energy and money, to make sure they provided exactly what so many of our businesses are so good at, excellent personal service.

“By shopping local, choosing to spend in small businesses we’re helping feed families, keep people in jobs and keep money circulating locally. It’s a win win situation if we all keep pulling together. Their contribution to our communities should not be underestimated.”

Full list of East Ayrshire High Street Heroes:

Alan Green, Royal Mail postman

Allan Brown & Team, Kilmarnock Railway Station Heritage Trust

Barry Whiteside, Captain Cone / Wynd Coffee Shop, Kilmarnock

Bryan Parker (community help during floods)

Claire Wylie, Stewarton Coronavirus Support Group

Craig & Fiona Robertson, Dunlop Post Office & Village Store

David Leggat, Kilmarnock (community volunteer and support)

David, Gillian and Lucy Gall, David @ Brownings, Galston Ayrshire

Dinner Ladies, Darvel

Donald McNaughton, DM Fruit Company, Kilmarnock

Elaine Stewart (community support)

Elizabeth Young & Staff, Forever Young, Kilmarnock

Gaela Hall, Doon Academy, Doon Valley

Heather McEwan of Cumnock, Create a Smile Scotland

Heather Montgomery, New Cumnock Food Hub

Iain Burgoyne, Scout Master, Pathead, New Cumnock

Ian Faulds, Faulds the Butcher, Kilmarnock

Imran (Sid) Akhtar, Best-One, Hurlford

Jane Goldie, Stalkers, Kilmarnock

John Cairns (community deliveries)

Kay Lopez, Brian Park, William Morrison, Andy Shaw, William Fegan (Hostel Support Workers)

Ken McCracken, Accountant (community service)

Margaret Lennox, Baker (cupcakes for carers)

Marion Gilliland, Gilliland Gifts, Cumnock

Morag Crichton, The Cup and Saucer, Stewarton

Morean Hamilton, The Thistle Bar & Jeely Piece Club

Moreen Baird, Langholm Farm, Symington

Natalie Carmichael (community service)

Norman Neilson, N & I Neilson Newsagents, Dunlop

Peace Childcare Ltd, Kilmarnock

Rachael McRoberts, The Jaggy Nettle, Sorn

Ryan McCall, McCall Heating & Plumbing Solutions, Kilmarnock

Sandy Hillan, Kilmarnock Local Coronavirus Support Network

Sharon Nicol, Volunteer, local community cafe

Stephen McGarrity, KP’s Fresh Fish, Kilmarnock

Bello Luca Coffee & Gift Shop, Kilmarnock

Create A Smile Scotland

Donsport Cumnock

Dunlop Post Office & Village Store

East Ayrshire Care Workers

Emma's Boutique, Cumnock

Fenwick Pharmacy

Field to Flower, Darvel

Flowers by Karen, Kilmarnock

Galos Peri Peri, Kilmarnock

Gauchalland East Tenants and Residents Association

Gilmartin's Bakery, Stewarton

HPS Hollywood Plumbing Services, Kilmarnock

Idle Hands Bakery, Dunlop

John Dawson Butchers Ltd, Cumnock

Keystore, Drongan

Lainshaw Lions Childcare, Stewarton

Patchwork Community Organisation, Kilmarnock

Staff of The Food Warehouse, Kilmarnock

Staff, Sainsbury’s Stewarton Store

Stewarton Coronavirus Support Group

Struther Farmhouse, Dunlop

Take a Bow Musical Theatre Company, Kilmarnock

The Espresso Kart, Kilmarnock

The Foundation Cafe [Recovery Enterprise Scotland]

The Sugar Cube, Stewarton

The Thistle, Hurlford

Townsley Butchers, Kilmarnock

UCAN-Learn.Work.Live, Kilmarnock

Your Home Store, Stewarton