Community minded residents given Pride In Ilfracombe awards
A cheerful volunteer, a youth tennis coach and a Queen Victoria impersonator were among 12 people to receive Pride In Ilfracombe awards at a packed ceremony at the Ilfracombe Centre earlier today.
The awards, organised by Ilfracombe Town Council, are now in their eighth year and celebrate the achievements of residents who go above and beyond the call of duty to enhance the town.
Candidates are nominated for the awards and judged by a panel which includes representatives of the police, RNLI, St John Ambulance, Ilfracombe In Bloom and the local voluntary service.
Jenna King, a disabled volunteer at Ilfracombe's My Start Children's Centre, totted up nine nominations - the most in the awards' history.
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She was nominated for her cheerful and helpful attitude at the centre where she has volunteered almost every day since 2009.
Ilfracombe Mayor Lynda Courtnadge, who presented the awards, said: "All nine of her nominations were glowing and extremely complimentary.
"I've spoken to many centre users and they all say Jenna is a delight and makes such a big difference to their days."
North Devon Theatre's education liaison officer Carol Turner was also awarded for working above and beyond her role while and Queen Victoria impersonator Rita Clews, who stars in the Victorian Day parade and promotes the town at events across the country, was also presented with an award.
Debbie Barrow Rigler, Vanessa Archer and Gary Tovey were all awarded for their voluntary work at Bicclescombe Mill while husband and wife team Mike and Yvonne Norris of the Christian Fellowship Church received awards for setting up the town's successful Street Pastors scheme.
Pathfield School music teacher Jenny Coates, volunteer Louise Coad and a couple called Mr and Mrs Shaw who renovated a property on the High Street completed the awards line-up.
In her closing speech, Mrs Courtnadge said: "These awards are always such a pleasure and by far the best duty as Mayor.
"We are truly blessed to have such a wonderful community here in Ilfracombe."