Somerset

Jack Negus wins Pride of Somerset Youth award

Jack Negus
Image caption Jack Negus opened a shop selling slippers to raise money for charity

An entrepreneur who has raised thousands for a children's heart charity has been chosen as the winner of the Pride of Somerset Youth Award.

Jack Negus, 18, from Ashcott, was born with the heart condition hypoplastic left heart syndrome.

Despite various operations, including open heart surgery on three occasions, he has campaigned extensively for the charity Little Hearts Matter.

The charity was partly founded by his parents in 1994.

It provides support to children with the same condition and their families.

Mr Negus has opened his own shop selling slippers, The Slipper Box in Street, to raise money for the charity.

'Deserved recognition'

He won the Sandy Padgett Award, named after Ch Supt Sandy Padgett, who died suddenly at the age of 41 in October 2009.

The winner, a person who has made a sustained effort to help others, was chosen by Ch Supt Padgett's husband Ken Padgett.

Tom Morgan, one of the people who nominated Mr Negus, said: "Jack really is no ordinary teenager and his remarkable story makes us all proud.

"Despite his illness he has done great things to help others and he deserves to be recognised."

Claire Brown, who also nominated him, said: "Jack is an inspirational, entrepreneurial teenager, mature beyond his years."

The awards ceremony took place at Somerset College on Friday night. Six award winners were chosen and 41 received highly commended certificates.

The awards are run by BBC Somerset, the Rotary Club of Taunton and the County Gazette series of newspapers.

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