GROUPS and individuals who have helped reduce social isolation, prevented crime and kept the district clean were among those recognised as part of the second Our Malvern Hills Community Awards.
The awards, which were created by Malvern Hills District Council, recognised dedicated members of the community as part of the authority’s commitment to building stronger and healthier communities.
More than 90 nominees and dignitaries attended the event, which also saw live music performed by Jack Brett and a key note speech from Colin Butler MBE, ChildLine’s longest serving volunteer.
Overall, 57 nominations were made in six categories.
In total, 20 people, projects, groups and businesses were celebrated for their achievements during a ceremony hosted at the HDAnywhere Community Stadium, the home of Malvern Town FC, last Wednesday.
Those recognised on the night included Link Nurseries who were honoured with the Business in the Community Award for their work supporting people with challenging mental health and acquired brain injuries through horticultural therapy.
Phil Woodhead, manager at Link Nurseries, said: “We are absolutely delighted in receiving the Business in the Community Award, we have worked hard to cultivate an inclusive atmosphere at the Link.
“We are looking forward to developing future potential and building on the success we have for people in the community and are excited about future projects with all the activities on offer.”
Paul Leopold, from Abberley Neighbourhood Watch, was presented with a Safe and Sound Community Award, for his work with the Malvern Hills Community Safety Partnership.
In the Improving Lives category, Sight Concern Malvern Branch Volunteers were recognised for the support and services they offer to their members, as were Zest4Life Conversation and Laughter for their weekly group to combat social isolation, loneliness and general well-being.
The Pop-Up Café – The Hanleys were the judges’ choice in the Action in the Community category for their work within the rural areas of the district, holding pop-ups cafés in the homes of residents who are isolated and lonely.
Catherine Armstrong from Suckley was presented with the Cleaner and Greener Community award for organising the Suckley Womble, tackling litter and raising money for the St John Ambulance.
In the Young Person’s category, Alex Harris was recognised for his volunteer work with Link Nurseries and also Francesca Ashley for her fundraising for St Richard’s Hospice.
Coun David Watkins, portfolio holder for healthier communities on Malvern Hills District Council, said: “The evening was a magnificent celebration of the many ways local people get involved and make a difference to their communities.
“We were delighted to be able to shine a light on the many and varied examples of community spirit across our district.
“We look forward to doing it all again next year.”