Community volunteers from across Cornwall have been recognised for their generosity during the Council’s inaugural Civic Awards ceremony.
Nominated by local Cornwall Councillors, unsung heroes who make an outstanding contribution to their local areas were presented with awards by outgoing Council Chairman Councillor John Wood during the event at County Hall in Truro.
Councillor Wood said: “It was staggering to meet so many people from such diverse backgrounds who do so much in so many different ways to benefit the communities in which they live and work. I hope that they will go away from here tonight aware that they are valued by us and that this is our way of saying ‘thank you’ on behalf of everyone in Cornwall.”
There were 14 recipients of the inaugural Civic Award:
Sarah Adkins, Saltash
Involved in numerous local community groups, Sarah has worked on fundraising events for her local church, is a member of the Saltash-Plougastel Twinning Association, a Trustee of the China Fleet Trust and Honorary Secretary of the Plymouth Area Business Council.
But it is for her dedication and inspirational leadership as Chair of Governors at Bishop Cornish School that she deserves particular recognition, especially as she will be standing down as Chair at the end of this term. She has seen the school through excellent inspections - but she has gone above and beyond her role, setting up a charity and spearheading a campaign to build the eco-friendly Education Centre that has won several national design and community awards. The children of the school are at the heart of all her actions and decisions. In 2011 the governors were the national winners of the National Governors Association Outstanding Governing Body of the Year Award in recognition of their excellent work.
Ebby Anstey, Newquay
Known in Germany as ‘Mr Twinning’, Ebby was the driving force behind Restormel Borough Council’s twinning with the German region of Dithmarschen. Since his retirement, Ebby has continued to support international relations by acting as secretary and then vice chair for the community organisation which took over the twinning work. As part of this work, Ebby organises week long exchange visits each year and produces a newsletter every two months.
Reverend Canon Malcolm Bowers, St Blazey
Until recently Father Bowers has been Parish Priest of St Blazey. Since 1983 he has played an active part in community life well beyond the demands of his clerical role and his abilities as a ‘mediator’ have been much appreciated. He has earned both the respect and love of a great many of his parishioners who, while not directly involved with the church, have greatly appreciated his contribution to village life. An example of his dedication to the community is his contribution to the Fourways Youth Centre for over 15 years.
Sonia Clyne, Par
Sonia is a founder member of the Par Community Association, which has worked tirelessly to bring the community together. She has served as secretary of the Association but has also been actively involved in serving the community in practical ways; such as acting as a marshal in the annual triathlon event and helping organise the annual ‘Big Lunch’ and many other ways.
Working with the St Blaise Feast committee, Sonya has helped organise the annual Feast Parade. She has also been and remains a long serving member of the Par Bay ‘Big Local Group’, which is on the verge of realising one of its principal ambitions: the establishment of a Community Hub centre.
Ann Craig, Stokeclimsland
Ann is a former teacher for St Joseph’s School in Launceston and takes a keen interest in local community life through her involvement in many organisations including the Women’s Institute and Old School Committee. Ann also runs weekly Old School Committee afternoon tea parties and was Stokeclimsland show secretary from the late 1970s until 2010. Local youngsters have also benefitted from Ann’s generosity through her voluntary work at the local primary school where she teaches bread making and knitting.
Gill Gillvray, Four Lanes
Gill set up the Four Lanes Neighbourhood Watch group in 1999 with a group of like-minded volunteers who were concerned about the safety of local senior citizens in their homes. One of the group’s first actions was to start a gardening scheme, making improvements to house exteriors, gates and fences in an attempt to make them less of a target. As a result of its actions, the group received a commendation from the Home Office under its Bogus Caller Initiative.
Keith Goldsmith, Menheniot
Keith has worked tirelessly for the good of his local community for many years. Keith served as Chairman of the Menheniot Cricket Club for a great number of years, giving the club outstanding service and raising tens of thousands of pounds to help improve and preserve its facilities and ensure the continued success of this valuable community asset.
Over the last year he has ensured that a patch of empty wasteland has been transformed from an eyesore into an inspiring and beautiful public open space for the enjoyment of all.
Jonathan Hancock, St Just
Known as a man who ‘gets things done’, Jonathan is involved in many aspects of village life. Chair of Trustees for St Just’s popular Lafrowda Festival and Treasurer of St Just and Land’s End Chamber of Commerce, Jonathan is also the linchpin for the village’s Christmas lights display, each year spending many hours putting up the lights. He was the first person to sign up as a volunteer driver for the Contact the Elderly project and at the weekend will spend time driving older members of the community to social events.
Frank Holden, Torpoint
Frank founded the Seventeen Thirty Club (STC) in Torpoint’s Kings Arms in 1997. Made up of several of the pub’s regulars, the group aims to support local young people. Every time the group raises £100, it donates the money to a youth organisation and since February 1997, the group has raised more than £22,000. It is estimated that around 3,000 children and young people in Torpoint have benefitted from the group’s generosity.
Derek Hoskin, Bodmin
For more than 12 years Derek has run the Lower Midway Neighbourhood Watch Association in Bodmin. Derek is also instrumental in keeping the Midway Road Playing Field in such fantastic condition – he personally checks the field every day and organises repairs to the equipment, as well as running fundraising events for the field.
Derek is also very active in helping residents of Midway sheltered flats. He delivers papers and shopping and he helps residents with their problems. He puts up Christmas decorations and organises their coffee mornings.
Bill Johnson, Roche
Described as an ‘asset to Roche’ it is Bill’s charitable spirit that saw him nominated for this award. A local hero in his community, Bill gives most of the eggs and produce from his allotment to people less fortunate them himself and makes items from scrap wood which he sells and gives the proceeds to charity.
Paddy Long, St Eve
Paddy is one of those people who quietly helps their community in numerous ways, never looking for or expecting any credit.
The list of community support endeavours Paddy is involved in is endless. He is part of the Community Speed Watch team; a former Parish Councillor; an organiser of litter picks; a helper on carnival day; a church warden for St Ive Church; a senior tutor for Cornwall Advanced Drivers; a supporter of numerous fundraising events; a manager of parking for flu vaccination clinics; a distributer of the parish magazine and many more.
Des Mennear, Tregony
Currently chair of Tregony Parish Council, Des has also served as a councillor for Carrick District and Cornwall County councils. Proactive in identifying issues of concern within the community, Des strives to ensure that the residents of Tregony get the best service. He is also a driving force behind many voluntary activities in the village.
Graham Mountford, Newquay
A Newquay RNLI stalwart, Graham began his links with the organisation in 1965, when the inshore lifeboat was brought to the town. Starting out as a crew member, Graham became the team’s submersible tractor driver in 1995 and also maintains the vehicle – a role he continues to this day.
Graham is now a deputy launching officer with responsibility for the launch of the lifeboat and he has given over 50 years of voluntary service to saving lives at sea. Not only has Graham dedicated his life to saving others by readily responding to the pager at all hours of the day and night, he has also willingly imparted his extensive knowledge and expertise to new, younger crew members.
When a call came for volunteers to help to tidy the grounds of the community centre he was there. In short, if volunteers are required for any community activity he will turn up.
Story posted 21 May 2015