Celebrating Suffolk town’s community heroes’ ‘fantastic’ work
PUBLISHED: 16:00 23 May 2020
A Suffolk community is celebrating the outstanding service of its kind-hearted and hard-working volunteers – even though they have missed out on an awards ceremony this year.
Felixstowe Town Council was forced to cancel the Civic Awards presentations due to the Covid-19 crisis but was determined to still recognise the sterling work done by the resort’s community stalwarts.
It has now announced the winners and outgoing mayor Nick Barber is arranging to safely deliver the awards direct to the recipients.
Five people will receive Mayor’s Awards for their outstanding service:
Maurice Barber gains his award for his outstanding contribution over many years to The Felixstowe Society of Allotment and Leisure Gardeners. Mr Barber, instrumental in leading the successful campaign for improvements to Cowpasture allotments, has decided to retire as its chairman this year after more than a decade in the role.
Lyn Osborne is rewarded for her dedication to Felixstowe Area Community Transport (FACTS) as a volunteer and the organiser of a monthly lunch club for up to 50 passengers who may not otherwise have the chance to socialise, while Valerie Norman gains her award for forming the group ‘Lung at Heart’ six years ago and supporting over 40 local people to regularly meet, exercise and socialise in addition to her role as staff nurse, caring for patients with lung disease at Ipswich Hospital.
David Tennant receives his award for work with Felixstowe Art Group, Old Felixstowe Carpet Bowls and the ME and Fibromyalgia group Positive Pals, and Joy Reeve is recognised for her work opening her beach hut and, with her friend Karen Kenny, serving refreshments to the public, inviting donations which have raised thousands of pounds for different charities.
Felixstowe Community Radio won the Felixstowe Community Award 2020, while the HMS Ganges Youth Trophy goes to Guy Comber, 15, a young volunteer helping to save lives with the Felixstowe Volunteer Coast Patrol Rescue Service.
Outgoing mayor Mr Barber said: “Though the circumstances put paid to our usual ceremony, we wanted to make sure that our nominees were not overlooked and were still able to be celebrated for their fantastic efforts leading up to the awards. We always have a difficult task in selecting winners from all the worthy nominations, but it is a privilege to be able to recognise our local heroes in this small way.
“Looking forward, given the amazing and ongoing community response to the coronavirus pandemic, I am sure that my successor will find it an impossible job selecting from next year’s nominees. We are so lucky to live in such a remarkable town.”
Nominations will be sought for the 2021 Civic Awards in due course – for details on now to nominate a Felixstowe resident for outstanding community service to the town, visit the Felixstowe Town Council website.