Albrighton's Red House receives its Queen's Award and recognition for efforts during pandemic

Volunteers at a community centre in Albrighton recognised in this year's Queen's Awards held a celebratory presentation.

Presenting the Queens Award for Voluntary Service to The Red House, is Shropshire Lord Lieutenant Anna Turner, with, management trustees Val Kirton, left and Rita Hester
Presenting the Queens Award for Voluntary Service to The Red House, is Shropshire Lord Lieutenant Anna Turner, with, management trustees Val Kirton, left and Rita Hester

The Red House was announced as one of the four Shropshire-based winners of the Queens Award for Voluntary Service (QAVS) in June, which is the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK – often referred to as the MBE for the voluntary sector.

Shropshire's Lord-Lieutenant Anna Turner visited the centre on Monday to presented the QAVS award and certificate to the trustees.

The presentation this year also included special recognition badges which were given to people who stepped up during the Covid-19 pandemic.

A total of 22 badges were given to volunteers at the Red House and a plaque was also unveiled as a tribute to Bill Middle – a long serving trustee, treasurer of the Red House and villager – who passed away earlier this year.

Chair of trustees, Jenny Wynn said: "This is a tremendous achievement and wonderful recognition for all our trustees and volunteers, many of whom have worked at the Red House supporting residents for more than two decades.

"Run by dedicated trustees and team of volunteers, the Red House has provided services and facilities for all age groups in Albrighton for more than 50 years.

"Apart from fundraising to keep the Grade II listed building in excellent condition, we run many activities including a free play scheme for children through summer holidays, OAP Christmas parties, fayres, and multiple fundraising events each year to support the community."

During the Covid-19 pandemic, the team really stepped up their community work and helped to convert the parish minibus into a mobile shop, providing food and delivering prescriptions seven days a week, serving those shielding throughout the first lockdown.

For the past six months they have also run a Community Support Scheme seven days a week, responding to hundreds of requests, delivering groceries, prescriptions, helping with transport to the surgery and assisting in any way needed by the community. They also delivered food bank parcels for the church and delivered hot meals cooked for the Melville OAP club in the village.

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