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Sharp shooter Amber receives special award from Duchess of Cambridge

Published: 5 Dec 2013 09:300 comments

FOR MOST people being in the same room as royalty would be good enough but Bracknell shooter Amber Hill is still pinching herself after receiving a prestigious award from the Duchess of Cambridge last week.

Royal approval: (l-r) Duchess of Cambridge, Amber Hill and John Inverdale at the SportsAid One-to-Watch award ceremony.

After a highly successful year, which has seen her shoot a world record and become the fifth best in the world, 16-year-old Hill was nominated for the SportsAid One-to-Watch Award, handed out at the annual SportsBall in London on Thursday.

Adding a touch of sparkle to the event was the Duchess of Cambridge, attending in her role as patron of SportsAid, a charity that aims to support the development of the country’s future champions.

But it was Bracknell teenage shooter Hill who stole the show, speaking with her Royal Highness upon her arrival before then scooping the top prize ahead of the two other nominees.

Accompanying Hill to the awards was her proud granddad Bill who first introduced her to shooting aged ten, and she admitted she couldn’t have imagined such achievements all those years ago.

“It was a great experience, not many 16-year-olds get the opportunity to meet Kate Middleton,” said Hill. “She was lovely; she was asking me how I got into my sport and how great SportsAid was.

“I got presented the award by Kate so I got to meet her again and she said well done, she also gave me a glass trophy, which I get to keep for a long time. I guess I’m getting to know her quite well now.

“To think that so many athletes had been entered in, I think it was 1,300 athletes, and then to win it was amazing. I took my granddad Bill along as he was the one who got me into sport. He was so proud, as were all of my family.

“If you had said when I was ten I would be receiving the award and meeting royalty I would not have believed you. It’s hard to choose which was best, meeting Kate or getting the award, they were both really special.”

It was not the end of the good news for Hill, who also found out on the same day that she had made the top ten for the BBC Young Sports Personality of the Year award.

And, while it could give her another chance to get dressed up, the former Claires Court School pupil insisted she would not be letting the success go to her head.

“I’ve been nominated in the top ten which means I get to go on Blue Peter where they announce us all. It means getting another dress but what’s not to love about that when you are a girl,” she added.

“I don’t feel under pressure to live up to my success and being named as the one to watch. I’m just going to keep my head down, keep training and hopefully get to the Rio 2016 Olympics.”

Hill has also been shortlisted for the BBC’s Young Sports Personality along with nine other contenders.

Lloyds Bank Local Heroes, in partnership with Sports Aid, has supported 1000 of Britain’s most talented developing athletes. As part of Lloyds Bank’s commitment to helping future sports starts prosper, the programme has continued in 2013. Follow future stars at www.lloydsbank.com/localheroes

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