Nicole Dowell followed her mum's footsteps into working at the North East Autism Society, and is now making her family proud with her success at the charity.

She is Programme Manager at No. 24 Adult Day Services and received the Inspirational Leader award for the way she supports and encourages her staff.

One member of staff said: "Nicole is not only a manger to myself and many others - making sure we have a well-run team - she has also been a counsellor without even realising it. I can't thank her enough for supporting us all through the terrifying time of the pandemic."

Nicole was taken by surprise by the award - she thought the party was to celebrate the service's Chairman's Award. "I'm really pleased, but it's the team that's fantastic here," she said.

Lindisfarne legend Ray Laidlaw sent a video message to Nicole and No. 24 congratulating them on their wins: