The News is searching for the most inspirational people in the Portsmouth area - and we need your help

Do you know somebody who is inspirational? The News is producing a special supplement featuring 50 inspiring individuals who make us all proud of the Portsmouth area - and we need your help.

Thursday, 16th January 2020, 12:40 pm
Updated Monday, 20th January 2020, 9:11 am
Gemma Weir and daughter Ivy delivering hundreds of letters to Downing Street calling for drug Orkambi to be made available on the NHS. They are pictured with Grace Paget from the Cystic Fibrosis Trust

Maybe you know somebody who selflessly makes a real difference to the community in which they live or work.

Perhaps you’ve been impressed by a person who has raised money for charity by completing a difficult challenge, or who has overcome great adversity. Or it could be that someone’s sporting achievements have left you feeling inspired.

Some of the people we feature may be high profile, but others will be unsung heroes who we think deserve to be recognised.

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A great example of someone who has inspired others with her determination is Gemma Weir from Portchester, who has tirelessly campaigned for the life-changing drug Orkambi to be made available on the NHS to her daughter Ivy, six, and others born with cystic fibrosis.

In October health secretary Matt Hancock announced that a deal had been struck between manufacturer Vertex and the NHS to license Orkambi in England after years of campaigning.

Gemma and Ivy delivered a petition to Downing Street and also appeared in a music video as part of their efforts in the Orkambi campaign.

Gemma said: ‘It has been a long fight for this drug. It has been gruelling and it has been hard going on all of us. We have had to give it our all to get where we are and take on the powers-that-be.’

Another hugely inspirational figure is powerlifter Micky Yule from Park Gate, who lost both legs from the knee down when he stepped on an improvised explosive device while serving with the Royal Engineers in Afghanistan in 2010.

The former instructor at Horsea Island defence diving school in Portsmouth has since tasted success at European and world level, won gold at the 2016 Invictus Games and competed at the Paralympics and the Commonwealth Games.

Commercial editor of The News Simon Toft said: ‘We know there are lots of inspirational people out there who make us so proud of the Portsmouth area and are excited about producing a special supplement that will pay tribute to them and their achievements.’

To nominate someone for the Inspirational People supplement, which is being sponsored by BAE Systems, please send an e-mail to [email protected] by Friday January 24. Include their name, the area they live and an explanation of why you think they are inspirational.