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North Weald Parish Council present Citizen of the Year Awards

Communities / Tue 23rd Apr 2024 at 10:01am

NORTH Weald Bassett Parish Council presented its Citizen of the Year awards at the Annual Parish Assembly.

Parish council chairman councillor Alan Buckley presented the awards at The Parish Hall, Thornwood, on Monday evening.

The winners are:

Residents’ Nomination Award – Bryan Roth

Bryan regularly posts ‘feel good’ stories on the North Weald Village Life Facebook page, entertaining people with comments from everyday life. Bryan recently became a widower and documents his journey of keeping busy, learning to cook and how he is coping with being on his own.

Volunteer Award – Margaret Mulliner

Following the sudden death of husband George, Margaret – who was already the ‘go to’ person when problems arose at North Weald Village Hall during George’s illness – was persuaded to take on the role of chair of the Village Hall Charity. For the past year she has continued to lead the village hall team and is always willing to cover jobs such as cleaning, bookings and correspondence when needed.

Sporting Award – Joanne Ryan

Joanne was selected to represent Great Britain and Northern Ireland in the 4x100m relay team at the European Masters Athletics Championships in Pescara, Italy, last year. The team, with Joanne as lead runner, won a gold medal.

Local Business Award, Highly Commended – Mary Crosby

Mary organises the community Farmers’ Market held in The Parish Hall, Thornwood, on the Saturday of every month.

Special Community Champions – Darren Goodey and Mike Witham – North Weald Airfield Operations

Last May, Darren Goodey, service manager, and Mike Witham, operations officer of the North Weald Airfield Operations Team, were first on the scene to administer life-saving first aid to Ken Waylett after the chairman of the Lotus Drivers Club became ill during a driver training visit. Having made the crucial first intervention, Darren and Mike handed over to paramedics from the Essex and Herts Air Ambulance based at the airfield.

Community Award – the Community Speedwatch team

Co-ordinated by councillor Baden Clegg and local resident Jimmy Waters, the volunteer-led Community Speedwatch team continues to operate around the parish. The team continue to highlight particular areas of concern such as Upland Road, Weald Bridge Road and Hastingwood Road. Councillor Andy Irvine is an active member of the team in Hastingwood.

Recognition Award – the Poppy Collection Volunteer Group at North Weald Airfield

Councillor Andy Tyler and friends from North Weald have been active in collecting for the Poppy Appeal on North Weald Airfield since 2018. The group originally responded to an appeal from the North Weald Poppy Appeal organiser who was looking for volunteer collectors in the absence of any volunteer members from the Royal British Legion. The group are present on Saturdays for three weeks on the run-up to Remembrance Sunday regardless of the weather. New parish councillor Colin Kinnear joined the group last year.

Organisation of the Year – North Weald Village Ploughman’s Group

This organisation is run by an avid group of volunteers who also undertake other functions within North Weald village. The group provide this monthly event which enables social inclusion and befriending across all generations. It allows people to get together and have a friendly chat and a meal.

Group Award, Highly Commended – former members of North Weald Preservation Society

The volunteers look after the planter next to the flagpole on the Village Green in North Weald providing a much welcome burst of colour throughout the year.

Group of the Year Award – the Friends of St Andrew’s School

The group, led by Ele Fox and Jane O’Leary, won the People’s Choice show garden at the BBC Gardeners World Autumn Fair at Audley End. With help from the school’s Eco-Warriors group, they designed the garden which is to be re-sited in the grounds of St Andrew’s Primary School. The team has raised over £20,000 through various fundraising events to build a new inclusive play sensory trail in the school enabling equal access to meaningful play experiences for all children. The team hold pre-loved uniform sales in school to ensure all children and families have access to affordable uniform options. They worked with St Andrew’s Church to ensure that children living in local temporary accommodation all received a Christmas present. The team were nominated by parish council clerk Sue de Luca for Epping Forest District Council’s Team of the Year, and were announced as winners at the Civic Awards in March.

Overall winners

The overall Citizen of the Year Awards winners were Special Community Champions Darren Goodey and Mike Witham.

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