Worcester rugby star Rochelle 'Rocky' Clark MBE has been named as the latest recipient of a Black Pear Tree Award.
The award will be presented to Rochelle, nicknamed 'Rocky', in the next few months. It follows the presentation of Black Pear Trees to local Olympians and Paralympians in October of last year.
World Class Worcestershire www.worldclassworcestershire.co.uk set up the awards to celebrate people who have championed the county and help to raise its profile.
Worcestershire is a county that has so much to boast about. Its economy is one of the fastest growing in the country, its university is amongst the best in the UK for getting graduates into work and by Royal command the county has a coat of arms that's unlike almost any other.
Olympic star Alex Gregory and Paralympic heroes Lauren Rowles, Claire Cashmore, GB Wheelchair Basketball Men’s Head Coach Haj Bhania and Rebecca Redfern all received a Worcestershire Black Pear Tree at a ceremony at Evesham Rowing Club.
Carrying on the sporting theme, 35-year-old Rochelle will receive the honour at her home ground of Worcester Valkyries. Date to be confirmed.
Prop Rochelle currently has 115 caps making her the most capped player in England international history, including men and women. She joined the Worcester Valkyries in 2010 and was a World Cup winner with England back in 2014. Away from the game she works as a rugby coach and a personal trainer.
Rochelle, who was given an MBE in 2015 for services to rugby, said: "I am thrilled to be presented with a Black Pear Tree. I love playing for the Worcester Valkyries and enjoy my time in Worcestershire. This is a real honour and I am looking forward to planting the tree."
World Class Worcestershire is still looking for nominations for the Black Pear Tree Award. If you have a community spirited person in mind then please go to the 'Get Involved' section of the website and submit your nomination.
Lucy Hodgson, Cabinet Member with Responsibility for Localism and Communities, said: "Worcestershire has always been a melting pot of talent and the Black Pear Tree Award is a way of highlighting talent – whether this is in sport, business or educational fields. Rochelle, just like the Olympians and Paralympians who received an award back in October, highlight a positive message to us all that hard work and determination will help you to achieve your goals. This message of positivity is something that we look to promote off the back of World Class Worcestershire and we would encourage more people to submit a nomination for these most deserving of awards."
The Black Pear appears on the county's flag. It can be seen in the Council Chamber at County Hall and it's proudly worn by the county's professional cricketers.