Stotfold, Sandy and Biggleswade volunteers saluted at awards evening

Volunteers from across Central Bedfordshire were saluted at the Cheering Volunteering awards.

Volunteers from across Central Bedfordshire were saluted at the Cheering Volunteering awards. - Credit: Archant

Hundreds of people turned out last night to celebrate the inspiring volunteering work of community heroes across Central Bedfordshire.

Those saluted at the fourth Cheering Volunteering awards run by Central Beds Council included Stotfold town councillor and community stalwart Sheila Bundock, who won the lifetime achievement award.

Central Bedfordshire Council chairman Councillor Fiona Chapman attended the evening at Dunstable’s Grove Theatre in her ceremonial role, accompanied by vice-chairman Councillor Brian Saunders.

The chairman said: “What an honour to be part of this splendid and inspirational event. I would like to congratulate not only the award winners and those who were highly commended in each category, but also all of the nominees and everyone who was involved in the evening.

“I am continually amazed by the enormous amount of effort our volunteers contribute to our daily lives. Volunteers are indeed the life blood of our society so it was fitting to celebrate their achievements during national Volunteers’ Week.”

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Highly commended in the lifetime achievement category were Sandy community activist Ken Lynch and mental health supporter Dorothy Kemp.

The young volunteer of the year award was won by Road Victims Trust, CHUMS and BRAKE fundraiser Grace Smith.

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Volunteer of the year was Heidi Larvin, who supports adults with complex needs.

The Friends of Houghton Hall Park were named volunteer group of the year, with Leighton Buzzard Children’s Theatre Youth Helpers and the Stotfold Good Neighbour Group both highly commended.

Diane Barnes of the Beds Suicide Bereavement Service won the outstanding contribution award. The sports volunteer of the year award went to Anna Carter of Leighton Buzzard Hockey Club, with Biggleswade Athletics Club’s David Brown and Houghton Hall parkrun’s Adam Langford both highly commended.

Finally, the panel’s choice award went to weight loss coach Mike Dyer – with high commendations to Mary Morgan of Clifton Chronicles and the Incredible Edible Dunstable community garden.

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