Hard-working, committed and creative teachers throughout York give their all to inspiring the next generation, and now one of the area's biggest companies is throwing its weight behind a bid to recognise the best.

Power company Drax is sponsoring the Teacher of the Year category in this year's Community Pride Awards, and the firm is appealing for people to put their star teachers up for recognition.

Production director Peter Emery said: “Drax is very proud to continue its sponsorship of the Teacher of the Year award.

"There are few more important jobs than the education of future generations and as we have seen with previous finalists the impact of a truly inspirational and caring teacher stays with you for life."

The company is sponsoring the award as a way of recognising the challenges teachers face, and thanking the dedicated professionals who do a difficult but important job so well.

Mr Emery added: "The pressures and challenges faced by teachers today seem to be tougher than ever and those who remain committed to realising the potential of children in their care are absolutely deserving of our recognition and thanks."

Nominations are being received for the award, as well as the 12 other categories in the Community Pride awards.

Once a shortlist has been drawn up the top nominations in each group will be invited to a special awards evening at York Racecourse in October, when a Drax representative will present the Teacher of the Year award winner with their prize.

Mr Emery added: “The Community Pride Awards always make for an emotional and humbling evening and we are really looking forward to hearing about this year's nominees.”

Last year, the award went to Andy Daniels, from Ralph Butterfield Primary School.

Judges said they faced a tough job choosing a winner, but the moving entries from the many children Mr Daniel taught clinched the prize.

They added: “It was an irresistible entry. He gives all he can and encourages the kids to do the same. Mr Daniel teaches with humour in every lesson and is kind and caring. There were some fantastic testimonials from the children.”

Now The Press wants nominations for this year's award. We are looking for someone who, through their enthusiasm and commitment, truly inspires their pupils.

To make a nomination, or for more information, go to yorkpress.co.uk/pride.