30 May 2024

‘Community champions are an example to us all’

by Rebecca Hannant

Community champions across the region have been recognised by local MP Graham Stuart as part of his initiative to celebrate their hard work.

Earlier this year, the Beverley and Holderness MP asked everyone in the area to nominate their Community Champions based on the activities they had done. Now, he has released his list of winners.

Deacon Diane Berry: for supporting and volunteering for a church in Withernsea in the absence of a permanent vicar.

Jayne Nendick: for providing vital care and support for Withernsea through Shores – a food bank and social supermarket, working with HEY Credit Union and more.

Darren England: for setting up Withernsea’s Armed Forces and Veterans Breakfast Club.

Harold Jobling: for organising events in Hollym including agricultural discussion groups, outings, education days on his farm and managing the regional agricultural training group.

John Whitehead, from Skirlaugh: for leading the East Riding Federation of Young Farmers.

In the Hornsea area, Mick Robinson from Aldbrough was recognised for running events across the village.

Martyn Eden was hailed for his work with the Hornsea Urban Gardeners, helping ensure the resort is always in bloom.

Jacky Stringer of HUG was also recognised for her gardening work in the town, making sure its public areas are well presented.

Joan Gale, of Hornsea, was rewarded for chairing Hornsea Lions and being on the committee of Hornsea Floral Hall.

Mr Stuart has sent certificates to each community champion, and hopes to meet them, either again or for the first time, in his regular visits to community organisations in Beverley and Holderness.

He said he was planning to celebrate their work individually, through his social media, over the coming weeks and months.

Mr Stuart said: “I applaud each and every one of them, and hope that they serve as an example for all.”

Jayne Nendick said: “‘The recognition reflects all of the Shores team, how each and every day they go above and beyond to support individuals in this wonderful community.

“From all of us here at Shores, we truly appreciate the award.”

Darren England said: “I am very surprised and humbled that the people of South Holderness have taken the time to vote for me as a Community Champion. Thank you all so much.”

John Whitehead said: “I am very pleased and extremely surprised to have been lucky enough to win this award. The Young Farmers movement is unique as a rural youth organisation in that it is run entirely by its members and people like me are only there to offer guidance and advice.

“Having served 31 years as Skirlaugh club president, I am currently in my 15th year as county president and the members past and present have all been a great bunch of people to be with. I am very gratified that someone has taken the time and trouble to nominate me.”

Martyn Eden said: “I was lost for words when I received the big white envelope with a House of Commons stamp on it, then I had a read of the letter and felt immensely proud for myself and the HUG group who work hard to make Hornsea a lovely place to live and for people
to visit. We don’t work alone as we always have the support of other team members, not always physically, but with the overall diversity and knowledge of the group, we know we will succeed.

“Yorkshire Ambulance Station Hornsea was an example of the support we got from the public and crews to achieve a result. It was teamwork and I’m very proud to be part of it.”

Jacky Stringer said: “I am very proud, yet humbled, at receiving recognition for my volunteer work, but I would not be able to do any of it without the support of the rest of our group along with the leadership and vision of June Greensmith.”

Joan Gales said: “I am absolutely gobsmacked, surprised and humbled. Totally unexpected.
I feel there are many more deserving people out there who deserve it more than I do. It is something I shall be very proud of.”

Mr Stuart added: “We’re all bombarded by bad news on a daily basis – but wonderful things happen in our community each and every day.

“That’s why I’m celebrating the work of our Community Champions – people who make a real difference to our community in literally countless ways. We live in an area full of wonderful acts of service.”