Unsung heroes who make a difference to lives of others

Rota Kids
Rota Kids

Alnwick’s unsung heroes were celebrated last week as the town council’s Civic Awards ceremony took place.

The awards were set up to celebrate and recognise a wide range of voluntary work by a number of individuals and groups, with a total of 20 awards being handed out on the night to those nominated by residents.

League of Friends

League of Friends

The Mayor’s Civic Youth award was won by the Alnwick RotaKids, who are a junior branch of Rotary International. The group is made up of young people, between the ages of eight and thirteen, from Alnwick South First, The Duke’s Middle and Lindisfarne Middle schools who meet regularly to plan fund-raising and how they can be of service in local community events.

A total of 18 individual civic awards were handed out. Former councillors Ken Gray and Ritchie Waddell received awards for their long service.

Both recently retired, Ken after serving 39 years and Ritchie after 51 years. They have also served as Mayor on a total of six occasions between them. Ritchie has also served as a Rotarian for 49 years.

David Parker received his award for his leadership, organisation and support of the Alnwick Spring Show, an event which is now firmly established in the town’s calendar.

Les Slater was rewarded for the many hours he spends helping the Royal British Legion, particularly in relation to the Poppy Appeal in Alnwick, while Madeline Russell was honoured for her assistance to young people in the area and in particular for her involvement in the guiding movement in Alnwick and across the county.

From the world of local sport, Gary Pattinson received an award for his energy and determination to set up and establish the successful Alnwick Amateur Boxing Club which operates from St Thomas’s Close.

Adrian Ions was rewarded for all his voluntary work and guidance given to the Bailiffgate Museum and his long service with the Alnwick Lions.

Ian Walker received his award for his long service and dedication to the Duchess’s High School Governing Body, the Aln Federation of Schools and Alnwick Rotary Club.

A number of long-serving Alnwick Lions and Alnwick Rotarians were also honoured: Adrian Ions and Len Reece were founder members of Alnwick Lions Club these two along with George Graham have been members for 38 years, Keith Rutter has 34 years’ service, Richard Hall 32 years, Jack Knox 26, Graham Luke 25 and Bill McDonald 24.

From the Rotary Club, Cliff Pettit (47 years), Dennis Dalby (47 years) and Michael Harper (52 years) received awards.

The Civic team award was won by the volunteers from the League of Friends of the Alnwick Hospital for their tremendous fund-raising in support of the patients and staff of the hospital.

Coun Alan Symmonds presented the awards at his last official engagement as Mayor.