The hall filled up quickly.

The hall filled up quickly.

It was a packed hall at the Gill Nethercott Centre as nearly 20 or local organisations promoted their activities in the lead up to the ‘new style’  Town Assembly and the Community Awards, arranged by the Town Council.

WI Cake competition

WI Cake competition

Local groups and displays
Local groups ranging from the Tennis Club and the Ramblers to the Cricket Club and the Silk Mill all provided displays and information on their activities. The WI had a cake competition while Whitchurch Nostalgia showed the wealth of history collected in the town.

Throughout the afternoon the hall was buzzing with at times around 100 people sharing ideas, meeting each other and learning of new activities they might support.

Mityana Presentation
But it was not just displays. A highlight was the presentation by the young students of Testbourne who have been on the Mityana Uganda Project who, with the Rev.Dodie, enthralled the audience with their experiences. The town should be proud of them.

Wock making

Wock making

Wocks
Meanwhile in the side room tables were full of children (and some adults) demonstrating the painting of Wocks – decorated stones that are hidden for others to find and enjoy. Many of these are now hidden around the town so keep those eyes open.

Town Assembly and Reports
The afternoon also included the official ‘Town Assembly’, where Mayor and Town Council Chairman Cllr John Buckley reported on the many Town Council activities, highlighting the fine community spirit in a town where people greet each other in the street. He particularly noted that Whitchurch is set to grow and with it come both opportunities and threats, all of which will need careful management.

Whitchurch town badge 2012 smHomage was paid to all who contribute to the town’s success including the unpaid volunteer Councillors, others who kindly give their time and support, and to the young people of the town who are very much the future. Residents were actively encouraged to take part in the community’s future with it being pointed out there were two vacant seats and that the role was both enjoyable and satisfying.
(a copy of the Report will soon be on the Town Council website).

Community Awards
2018 is the 25th Anniversary of the Annual Community Awards and this year saw a record number of nominations. Having started in 1994 the Awards recognise those who “work voluntarily for the good of the local community, or who inspire others through their achievements.” Six Awards are selected along with a Youth Award.

Award Presentations to much cheering and clapping
This year, all 30 of those nominated received a Certificate in recognition of their support for Whitchurch to much deserved applause and not a little cheering.
The 2018 Awards were then presented to:
Sarah Owen, Clare Datta, Elizabeth with Tina Hills (joint), Paula Jacobs, Jackie Browne with Barry Carter and Charmaine Hoey (joint), and Lauren Blake. The Youth Award was presented to Katie Paterson.

Community Award Winners 2018

Community Award Winners 2018

Anniversary Cakes with Candles
The afternoon ended with a ‘blowing out of the candles’ as cupcakes, decorated with ’25’, following a countdown, were puffed out by the Award Recipients.

The Anniversary Cakes – mmmmm

The Anniversary Cakes – mmmmm

Blowing out the candles

Blowing out the candles

Feedback is being requested on the ‘new-style’ event. was the day right? Was the length OK? What could be added?

The FULL LIST OF NOMINEES (and reasons for nomination) IS BELOW.
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The Nominees with very brief reasons for nomination were:

Annie Dickinson for Whitchurch in Lights
Jon Wilks for resurrecting the Folk Club
Sarah Owen for work with Rising Fives, Tea & Tots, Toy Library, Parish Magazine and Cricket Club
Ray Stevens and the Crew of 06 Fire Station for response to the fire next to petrol station
Leigh Smith and Alison Cooper for support to Girls Football
Mark Freeborough for support to U9 Football
Geoff Knappett for his work on the All Hallows Church Room
Clare Datta as Chair of Governors at the Primary School
Phil Turner for work on the Neighbourhood Plan and as Trustee of the Silk Mill
Jonathan Inglis for work with Overton Rugby Club Youth Teams
Whitchurch Warriors Netball Club for support for Netball
Colin Reeves for arrangements for the Lantern Procession
Andrew Monk and Gill Bilton for work with the WAAG at All Hallows
All Hallows Bell Ringers for Bell Ringing activities
Gerry Keohane for Street Cleaning services
Ian Clacy for field mowing in Micheldever Road
Elizabeth Bayliss and Tina Hills for introducing and promoting Wocks in Whitchurch
John Mariner for work with the Majorettes, Rising Fives, History Society, the Parish Fete and the GNC
Neighbourhood Plan Steering Committee for creation of the Whitchurch Neighbourhood Plan
John Read for his support on the No.59 Community Bus
Paula Jacobs for work with the Rotations Charity Shop
Jackie Browne, Barry Carter and Charmaine Hoey for Walkers are Welcome and the Health Walks
Lauren Blake for work with the Football Club, the Rotten Hill Cup, Clic Sargent fund raising and the Whitchurch Warriors Netball Club
Katie Paterson for help with Girls Guiding

THE AWARD RECIPIENTS were:

SARAH OWEN

CLARE DATTA

ELIZABETH BYLIS with TINA HILLS

PAULA JACOBS

JACKIE BROWN with BARRY CARTER and CHARMAINE HOEY

LAUREN BLAKE

KATIE PATERSON (Youth Award)

THE FULL CITATIONS for the seven recipients above can be downloaded:
AWARD CITATIONS LEAFLET

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Many thanks to those who provided pictures
(click them to enlarge)