Exclusive by Alan Quick
THE Mayor of Crediton thanked, on behalf of Crediton Town Council, the many people, charities and organisations that help make Crediton the town it is today at a reception held at the Boniface Centre this week.
More than 160 people attended the event, which Cllr Frank Letch said was a great way to thank the individuals, charities and organisations who make Crediton such a great town.
He added that it was a great opportunity for people to meet and talk to each other and spoke of successes during the last year, including the Christmas in Crediton event and other Town Council and town organisation initiatives.
He thanked the councillors for their support and the council staff, town clerk Mrs Clare Dalley, assistant clerk Mrs Emma Anderson and receptionist, Mrs Sandie Blake, for their hard work.
He also thanked his cadet, Abi Sansom and his wife, Natalia, for all their support during the year.
£18,110 OF GRANTS PRESENTED
On behalf of the town council, Cllr Letch presented cheques to some town organisations, which were collected by representatives present.
Recipient organisations were: Tiverton and District Community Transport Association £1,500, Crediton Arts Centre £1,000, Torridge, North, Mid and West Devon Citizens Advice £2,000, Crediton International Social and Cultural Organisation (CISCO) £400, Crediton Area History and Museum Society £1,000, Crediton Town Band £500, Journey Therapeutic Counselling Service £250, St Boniface Concert Society £250, Crediton Parish Church £160 (£80 to the annual Flower Festival, £80 to annual Christmas Tree Festival), Tarka Rail Association £50, Age Concern Crediton and District £1,000, Crediton Congregational Church – Lunchtime recitals and concert £400, Crediton Town Team - CredFest 2017 £800, CHAT £1,500, Crediton Arts Centre: Music Makers - Busk It! £800, Crediton Arts Centre - Food and Drink Festival 2017 £800, Crediton Community Bookshop £700, Boniface Trail Association £400, The Turning Tides Project CIC £800, Crediton Rugby Club £700, Crediton Talking News £200, Crediton and District Access Group £100, Friends of Crediton Station £300, Crediton Operatic and Dramatic Society (CODS) £500, Crediton Children’s Centre £400, Crediton Town Team - Flag Festival 2017 £800, Crediton Youth Theatre £800.
FOUR TOWN PLATE AWARDS
Four awards were presented during the evening to recognise those who have given service to the town.
Awards were made to Bob Stacey, Margaret Jewell, Peter Hamilton and Peter Beale.
Peter Hamilton was thanked for his contribution to Crediton Arts Centre, Christmas in Crediton, Shakespeare in the Square and for work in other areas.
Margaret Jewell was thanked for her service to Crediton Parish Church, to the town and fundraising, particularly recently for Hospiscare, for judging the businesses as part of Floral Crediton and for the community.
Peter Beale was recognised for his litter picking volunteering in the town, in all weathers. Mr Letch said he encouraged home owners and business owners to keep their home or business frontages clean and tidy.
Bob Stacey was thanked for being a volunteer car driver for Age Concern Crediton for 22 years.
JAMIE FLEMING AWARD
The presentation of the Jamie Fleming Award then took place.
Mr Letch introduced former five-times town mayor Mrs Gillian Ponsford, who explained that the Jamie Fleming Memorial Award, in memory of Jamie Fleming, was for a young person who had done something outstanding.
Lance Corporal Jamie Fleming, from Spinning Path Gardens, Crediton, spent four-and-a-half years in the Army, in the Royal Signals and had a distinguished career but tragically died following a road accident.
Jamie’s parents, Stewart and Alison Fleming presented the award to Alice Fraser Edwards from Copplestone.
Mrs Ponsford said that whilst most of her peers are following their own dreams, Alice had dedicated her gap year to two hugely important causes for the benefit of others, one local and one international.
One is volunteering in France distributing supplies to refugees, initially in Calais and now further afield, largely at her own expense regarding travel and accommodation, and keeping the issue in everyone’s minds through social media.
Representatives from Copplestone who nominated her said she has already been to the affected areas several times and was recently there again at the moment, giving her time to help these very vulnerable people.
Locally, her nominees said she has worked tirelessly for the village, highlighting issues that affect all members of the community, adding that several things would never have evolved without her enthusiasm and initiative.
The nominees said: “We greatly admire her selflessness and drive; she is an inspiration to all of us and a shining example of how young people can really make a difference in the world.
Mrs Ponsford added said by saying: “She is a fitting recipient of the Jamie Fleming Award”.
Rev Preb Nigel Guthrie spoke and said: “thank you to all those who through their efforts make life better for those in our community and enrich the lives of us all, young and old.”
He added: “Please bless this town to go forward in friendship and peace.”
The food was highly praised and was provided by David Oliver of Oliver’s Bakery of Crediton.