Playwright Shelagh Delaney honoured in Salix Stars Awards
Published by James Allan for Salix Homes in Housing and also in Communities
One of Salford’s most famous writers has had an award named in her honour thanks to social housing provider Salix Homes.
Salford-based Salix Homes has introduced the Shelagh Delaney Creativity Star category to its annual customer awards – The Salix Stars Awards - which recognise the unsung heroes of Salford.
Shelagh Delaney was born in Salford on November 25, 1938, and was one of the first working class, female playwrights.
Shelagh, who grew up on Duchy Road, famously penned critically acclaimed play A Taste of Honey when she was just 18 years old. The play, set in 1950s Salford, enjoyed a run of success on Broadway before it was adapted into an award-winning film in 1961.
Now Salix Homes, which still manages the property where Shelagh grew up, has named an award after the renowned playwright, who sadly died in 2011, in recognition of her contribution to Salford and the arts and to celebrate the inaugural year of Shelagh Delaney Day.
The Shelagh Delaney Creativity Star will be awarded to a group or individual from Salford who have shown exceptional creative talent and innovation.
Sue Sutton, chief executive at Salix Homes, said: “The Salix Stars recognise the unsung heroes in our community and Shelagh Delaney was one of those heroes. She was one of the finest writers of her time and everyone in Salford is immensely proud of her and all that she achieved.
“We know that Salford is bursting with creative talent and we’re hoping our Salix Stars Awards will help uncover some budding Shelagh Delaneys of the future.
Next month Salix Homes will also unveil a plaque on Shelagh Delaney’s childhood home to commemorate the playwright.
The screenplay of Shelagh’s best known work A Taste of Honey went on to win a BAFTA in 1962, but she also enjoyed tremendous success with her other works including Sweetly Sings the Donkey, The White Bus and Charlie Bubbles.
The Salix Star Award will be presented by Shelagh Delaney Day founder Louise Woodward Styles alongside award sponsor Morrison, part of the Mears Group.
Proud Salfordian Louise spearheaded a campaign for a Shelagh Delaney Day in Salford in honour of the playwright, and the inaugural event takes places on November 25 this year, which would have been Shelagh’s 76th birthday.
Louise said: “Shelagh is one of Salford’s most famous daughters and an iconic female role model, but I’ve always felt her achievements haven’t been as appreciated as they should have been, which is why I started the campaign for Shelagh Delaney Day. Since then, the support of Salix Homes and Salford City Council has been magnificent, putting to rest the disappointment of the past.
“Thanks to the dedication and support of Salix Homes, Shelagh Delaney’s legacy will be remembered forever. The ‘Shelagh Delaney Creativity Award’ is a wonderful way to not only inspire, but also publicly recognise the abundance of talent in this great city of ours. "
The other categories in this year’s Salix Stars Awards include the Aim High Star, the Spirit of Salford Star, Young Rising Star and Best Green Star.