Hundreds of young achievers from across the UK have a date in the prestigious setting of St. James’s Palace on Tuesday 7th July 2015, including Ellen Kershaw from Wardle.


Ellen achieved her Gold Duke of Edinburgh’s Award with Girlguiding Lancashire South East.  She will travel to London on Tuesday 7th July to receive her certificate from the DofE’s Trustee and Gold Award holder HRH The Earl of Wessex.

The Gold Award Presentation (GAP) is a celebration and recognition of Ellen’s achievements in completing her Gold DofE programme.  The GAP is a unique event and a fitting culmination to mark the hard work, determination and perseverance required.


Ellen worked tirelessly through the five sections of her DofE programme over 18 months to achieve her Gold Award.  Her diverse activities included completing one-mile open-water swimming events in Lake Ullswater (in 50mins) and The Manchester Great Swim at Salford Quays (in 44mins) raising £300 for Macmillan Cancer Support for completing this physical challenge.

GM SwimVolunteering and completing her Adult Leadership Qualification with the 21st Rochdale Guide Unit. Ellen plays tenor horn with the Wardle Academy Youth Brass Band – a skill which she has developed to enjoy a successful career with the band winning many titles and performing at The Royal Albert Hall. Her expedition was undertaken with fellow members of the 44th Rochdale Senior Section – back-packing for four days in the Yorkshire Dales. Ellen also participated in a group trip to India to visit Sangam – one of the World Guiding Centres where they spent time appreciating Indian cultures and helping in a local women’s and children’s homes in Pune. The group also travelled around India including Jaipur, Delhi and Agra to visit some of the famous sites including the inspirational Taj Mahal.


Throughout her DofE, Ellen was able to prove to be a great team member, demonstrate courage, leadership skills, resourcefulness and compassion for those less fortunate than ourselves.


Ellen said of her experience “Completing personal and team challenges in DofE has given me the determination and self-confidence to obtain new life skills. Travelling in India was a life changing experience and I continue to volunteer with the 21st Rochdale Guides as part of the leadership team providing opportunities for young people.”  


These experiences show what an impact doing your DofE can have, and can develop the skills needed for life.  Ellen’s Gold Award helped to get her a place on a children’s nursing degree course.