Raunds Mayor's Citizens Awards 2020
As part of the annual civic awards scheme that we have run in Raunds for the last five years residents were encouraged to nominate other residents of the town who have put themselves out to help others in the community. This year we received sixteen nominations, and the original intention was to have a small presentation ceremony as part of the civic service on 29 March. The service was cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic, but this year's award winners still deserve recognition, so a full list of nominees and nominators can be found on this website. Award winners have been encouraged to send photos of themselves with their certificates, and these have also been posted here.
Congratulations and thank you to all those who have been recognised for their hard work in supporting the community in Raunds, and thank you to those people who have submitted nominations.
Best wishes to everyone from Magdalena and me, please obey the government guidelines and stay safe.
Tanya Griffiths – Nominated by Cllr Richard Levell
Tanya Griffiths approached the Town Council last autumn to ask whether they would let her use Saxon Hall for free so she could hold weekly fitness classes for members of the public which would be free of charge. The Council recognised that this would fit perfectly with its ambition to promote a healthy lifestyle and said it would. Five months later, Tanya is now half way through a second term of classes. Every Monday evening, over twenty people turn up for the 90-minute session, which consists of warm-up stretching, exercising and meditation. Tanya's enthusiasm and positive attitude are infectious, and each week sees new people attending. Magdalena and I, along with three other councillors are now regular attenders. These classes are a huge commitment by Tanya for the people of Raunds, but they are very much appreciated, and she has a loyal following. It is my great pleasure to nominate Tanya for this award
Tanya Griffiths – Nominated by Linda Hogg
Tanya always presents a positive outlook to life and her free fitness classes are an inspiration to me and I'm sure to the other members of the class. I feel we need to promote people like Tanya who are an inspiration to all in our community.
East Northants First Responders – Nominated by Cllr Helen Howell
I first became involved with the Raunds First responder group around 2010 as a volunteer responder through St John Ambulance service. I worked for some years as a responder with that group till I had to stop due to work and council commitments. Since then the service has evolved to East Northants First Responders with an amazing team of volunteers working day and night to provide category one support to East Midlands Ambulance Service. These individuals give up their own time day and night to be on call to attend us in our homes when we truly need them. Not only do they provide support to the residents here in Raunds and surrounding areas but they have worked with Raunds Town Council to provide free first aid training to anyone who wants to come along and learn how to help themselves and their family in an emergency. They also continue to support the town by attending the events in the town to provide cover in case of emergency. This award isn't just for one individual, it is for a team of amazing people whose dedication and commitment to us here in Raunds has an impact on our lives on a daily basis and deserves recognition and thanks. They are our guardian angels in green!! I am overjoyed to be able to nominate each and every one of them for this award.
Pam and Peter Whitney, Sylvia Patterson and Debbie Cragg – Nominated by Caroline Adams
I would like to nominate Peter, Pam, Debbie and Sylvia for cooking Sunday lunches for 60 people once a month at Raunds Methodist Church for over 20 years. The tables look beautiful and the food delicious. People come to meet their friends and make new ones. There is a lot of hard work behind the scenes and nothing phases them. We all appreciate it.
Janet Guest – Nominated by Judy Dewing
We, the Raunds Ladies Group would like to nominate Janet Guest. Janet was founder member of the club in 1969. The club then named Raunds Mothers Club. She was it's first Chairman and again in 1975 & 1976. She was on the committee for many years and much valued. In 1987 she started the Beaver section at 2nd Raunds scouts, has been their leader and still is…. Some of her family also inspired to join the movement. Janet is a worthy nominee, Raunds born and bred. Raunds Ladies Group value her membership and help when needed.
Raunds Community Choir - Nominated by R.L Braban
I want to nominate Raunds Community Choir who are this year celebrating their 10th Anniversary. Throughout those 10 years they have continued to support the local community from singing in the local care homes to concerts in the churches to help raise money for their projects. All are made welcome at their choir whether you consider yourself a singer or not and last summer saw them working alongside the library in inviting everyone to come along for a Big Sing. This was so popular it was repeated at Christmas. I have seen first-hand the hard work and dedication that every member puts in to making the concerts the enjoyable experience they are. Well done to them all.
Tom Hatton – Nominated by Shaun Rouse
Tom is part of the East Northants First Responders. He volunteers numerous hours to answering local 999 calls as well as teaching basic life support skills to the local community. He is always willing to put himself out to help others which includes mentoring our new members. Tom is outgoing, a great team player and generally nice guy. He does all of this even with a full-time job and family. He is what community is all about. Tom is a valued member of the ENFR we are proud to have him on the team.
Whitechapel Team, Methodist Church – Nominated by Rev Kim Shorley
Since 2005 a team of volunteers organised on behalf of the Methodist Church have been visiting Whitechapel homeless shelter every fifth Saturday. This involves leaving Raunds at the very early hours of 4am to be on the road to London ready to serve a hot breakfast to men and women who are sleeping rough in London. They also arrange for donations of clothing, food and sleeping bags to be distributed. The main organiser of this is Peter Whitney as he often is driving.
Church Lunch Team, Methodist Church – Nominated by Rev Kim Shorley
Since 2000 a team of volunteers at the Methodist Church headed by Peter and Pam Whitney, Sylvia Patterson, Debbie Craggs and others have been serving monthly lunches at the church, not just for church people but open to all who are looking for a good meal and good company. This includes Christmas lunch each year and can be for up to as many as 90 people.
Cassie and Amy Mawson – Nominated by Carrianne Mawson
I am nominating my daughters for their courage, kindness and patience. Myself (mummy) has Multiple Sclerosis. I was diagnosed 5 years ago and before being diagnosed I was very ill.
My daughters had to be walked to schoolboy a kind lady as I was unable to walk past 10m. Since being diagnosed and finally treated I am today able to walk my children to school. This is a blessing, but I still have relapses and often fall over. They are so brave and kind. Helping me up and being strong. At home this continues daily as they watch mummy drop things, walk into door frames and spill food and drink and fall very tired.
I would not be here without them and my husband. Each one understands and takes time to show me love and kindness.
I suffer with Bipolar also and at times I become very low. They give me a reason to keep going and I want them to know how amazing they are. The amount of accidents and hospital appointments I have, they have not once complained or showed me their upset.
Only 6 and 8 years old, these 2 girls have had to grow up very fast and miss out on a lot of things with their mummy. From making me drinks, putting me to bed and helping me dress and walk when wobbly, these two need to know how amazing they are.
Ann E Houghton – Nominated by Chris Gammon
Annie is a true unsung hero of our community. She works tirelessly to make sure things happen, everyone is happy and she often puts people before herself. She is one of the sole founders of Raunds Community Choir. She has worked hard to ensure that it was/is a success and continues to do so. She has also played a big role in looking after the Raunds Community Centre ensuring its success and it being an asset to the community. Annie also plays a big part in the Raunds Garage Sale and has raised money to keep the community centre going. She also does countless other things that I don't know. On a personal note she has supported me since I moved to the area 12 years ago. Ann has championed what I have done and helped me establish Raunds Ukulele orchestra through her support in starting Ukulele classes at the community centre. She always has the time for you and believes in anything that could help the community or others. She has equally supported the Different Direction Choir, and worked hard with me to get the 2 choirs working together and overcome lots of challenges. I cannot think of anyone that is more deserving, needs celebrating and thoroughly deserves recognition. I really hope you can celebrate all she does.
Jenny Brown – Nominated by Miss K Wilcox, Raunds Park Infants
Jenny began volunteering at Raunds Park Infants school in November 2009.
She has dedicated an afternoon once a week since then listening to children read. Jenny is extremely committed, calm and patient and gives up her time once a week to support our young children's reading journey.
Jenny often listens to children read who find reading difficult, haven't got the support at home, or who need that extra bit of practice. The children really enjoy reading to Jenny and there is often a queue of children asking, 'Am I reading with you today?'
Jenny is kind enough to always bring the children a treat at Christmas, Easter and the end of the year and buys her own special stickers to reward the children's efforts and achievements with reading.
Since volunteering in my class, Jenny has also provided me with an ear to bend or a shoulder to laugh or cry on as she understands the highs and lows of life as a school teacher, having been one herself.
As a school we really do think Jenny deserves an award for giving over 10 years voluntary service to our young children and supporting their reading journey.
Elaine Gubbins – Nominated by Miss K Wilcox & Mrs H Marks, Raunds Parks Infants
Elaine began volunteering at Raunds Park Infant School in 1981! She initially volunteered at the school and supported reading, cooking and crafts.
Elaine was employed as a lunchtime supervisor from October 1984 until August 2015. Throughout her paid employment and ever since Elaine has also dedicated an afternoon once a week listening to children read. Elaine is extremely committed, calm and patient and gives up her time once a week to support our young children's reading journey.
Elaine often listens to children read who find reading difficult, haven't got the support at home, or who need that extra bit of practice. Elaine is extremely gentle and spends quality time with some of our most vulnerable children giving them 1:1 time, in an otherwise busy school day to simply have a chat.
I will never forget the day a child said to me 'Mrs Gubbins is just like the best Nan isn't she?' – what a compliment.
Elaine always brings her own stickers to reward the children's effort and achievement and there is always excitement when she has a new set especially when they are glittery and big!
As a school we really think Elaine deserves an award for giving nearly 40 years of voluntary service to our young children and supporting their reading journey. I know there are a lot of people in Raunds who will have 'read to Mrs Gubbins' and long may it continue! What an achievement!
Caroline Adams – Nominated by Sharon Priest
The volunteers in our community do amazing things! They all deserve to be recognised for their commitment and dedication to their role. Today I would like to nominate this person for the Mayor's Citizens Award in recognition for their commitment to Girl Guiding in Raunds for the past 40 years. This volunteer started assisting with the guide unit in Raunds at the age of 18, where for 6 years she helped young girls gain valuable life skills and inspired them to discover their potential through badge work, activities, camping skills and games.
In 1986 this volunteer moved across to help with the Brownie unit, where she has since helped to make a difference to the lives of 100's of girls in our community.
More fondly known as 'Squirrel', for the past 33 years this volunteer has led the Brownie unit at the Methodist church. During this time, she has inspired girls, spent time making a difference to their lives and shared skills and knowledge.
Brownies is about trying new things that teach girls about themselves, their community and their world. Many women, young people and girls from Raunds will have fond memories of their time at Brownies with this leader as their 'Brown Owl'. Many of you will have seen this leader supporting the town at events with fundraising stalls, raising much needed cash to help support both the community and the running of her unit.
Caroline, I want to thank you on behalf of the community of Raunds for your commitment and for making a positive difference on the lives of so many girls in our community.
Mark Brookside, Andrea Wray, Bill Tirebuck and Linda Tirebuck – Nominated by Magdalena Levell
In 2019, Mark, Andrea, Bill and Linda took a mammoth task upon themselves to organise the first ever Festival of Transport in Raunds. They talked to the Town Council about lending support for road closures, licences and health and safety, but from there it was them alone – the Four Musketeers – who worked day and night to engage sponsors, exhibitors, food and craft stalls and entertainment acts.
Four people who have brought an extremely successful event to the town, with exhibitors and visitors coming from close and far away to take part in what is now the most talked-about event of 2019 in Raunds.
And let's don't forget the £6,009.89 raised during the event for the Children's Air Ambulance!
So, this award is for creativity, ambition and determination to make things happen, to show what Raunds can offer if we come and work together and bring the spirit of community to the town.
Family Shopper, Marshalls Road – Daniel Loader
Ken and his employee's (though they really feel and behave as a family!) Mandy, Sue, Claire, Leah to name a few of the crew. They have shown our community tremendous and steadfast support and resolve, ensuring we have our everyday essentials with minimal discomfort or loss to routine. Ken himself I discovered has been to Booker's a minimum of 5 times a week! Leaving everyday at 4am to even get a position in line. Not to mention the ladies that graft away daily for us on the new front line of this pandemic. I have never heard them complain and they soldier on, everyday, to which I have a deep personal respect.
This incredible example of commitment to our community is inspiring and I personally, as well as several of my neighbours believe that this warrants a return gesture of respect and thanks! I have already purchased a bottle for each of them, but I know that to be a simple token thanks, compared to what they're doing for this town and the ones we love.