Spirit of Corby award winners have criticised an article by The Sun newspaper, branding it patronising, distorted and untrue.
The story by columnist Rod Liddle sparked outrage when it was published last week.
He made references to people from Scotland in the town with ginger hair and said residents enjoyed moaning about the town’s Polish community.
The article said everyone seemed to be on the minimum wage and that town centre pawn shops were thriving.
Last month at the Spirit of Corby Awards 2012 ceremony recognition was paid to a few of the hundreds of people in Corby who give up their time to help others. From those working to help young people and community volunteers, to others involved in education and sport, the awards honour Corby’s unsung heroes.
They have voiced anger at the slur on the town by The Sun and spoken out about the close-knit, hard-working and big-hearted community the newspaper chose to ignore.
Callum Reilly, a pupil at Lodge Park Technology College, won the Jimmy Kane Young Spirit Award for his work in the arts. He said: “I thought The Sun article was disgusting and patronising. It failed to mention the massive changes that have taken place in Corby.
“There are hundreds of people working away in Corby for the benefit of the community without looking for recognition and thousands more who work hard every day to earn a living.”
Doreen Hunter, who won the Community Spirit Award for years of work at Corby Women’s Refuge, said: “Corby people have spirit and determination. Award-winner Arthur Tester, who is 92, is still working for the community. He collects cans for charity and now I’m doing it too, as well as becoming a volunteer driver.”
Rosemary Saunders won the Club Spirit Award for running Corby Sport Dimensions activity day camp for young people. She said: “The Sun article was unfair and unbalanced.
“It was not a true reflection of life in Corby. During the school holidays I had 45 volunteers, one of whom gave up 300 hours of her time, before going to university. The article ignored the inspiring work that people do and vilified the town. I would like to know why.”