THE Annual Whitchurch Town Assembly and Community Awards took place last week, celebrating those who have helped the community in various ways over the years.

The community awards formed a part of the annual town meeting, with updates from the Town Council chairman and mayor Cllr Andy Jordan and the area’s borough councillors, Cllr Chloe Ashfield and Cllr Keith Watts.

The community awards are given to the residents that have been recognised by an independent judging panel for their efforts around the town.

The first award went to Helen Knight, who was praised for her hard work being the telephone co-ordinator for Neighbourcare in Whitchurch, helping to organise the network of volunteer drivers, who help those who most need it get around.

Another award went to Brian Cousens, who has been running Brian’s Bingo, an event that is much-loved in the area.

It’s estimated that over the time Brian has been running the bingo, he has devoted more than 450 hours of his time every year.

The next award was a joint award, going to both Paul and Jan McGarvey, who have dedicated their time and resources into giving a room to the Whitchurch branch of the Royal British Legion at the Bell Inn free of charge for the past 25 years.

Sarah Castle also received an award for her time as centre manager at the Gill Nethercott centre, as well as forming a fully subscribed Guide pack in the area, which now has a waiting list to join.

She also helped to create Singing for the Mind, which is a group that is in place to slow dementia.

John Clark received recognition for his time in the area, helping out in many different ways and being the town mayor five separate times, and for his tireless commitment to the area of Whitchurch.

The final award was a group award for the Scout leaders in Whitchurch, who were praised for their efforts in organising and running several different Scout groups.