Citizen of the year honour for volunteer

Dedicated volunteer Shirley Sanderson has been voted the first ever West Lindsey Citizen of the Year after 42 years of serving the community.

Mrs Sanderson, from Gordon Field in Market Rasen, has selflessly supported many of our towns and villages including Market Rasen, Tealby, Walesby, Kirkby cum Osgodby, Owmby and Toft Newton.

Much of that time has seen her as parish clerk to these councils - she still works at Kirkby cum Osgodby council - but she has also been a West Lindsey District Councillor, a school governor and chairman of Brookenby Development Ltd.

Mrs Sanderson was surprised to be nominated and to win the award for Market Rasen Area Champion, before being named as the overall Citizen of the Year as well.

She said: “I was astounded to be nominated for something I have enjoyed doing for many years. It’s just normal work for me and I have enjoyed making things happen.

“It would be good if more younger people got involved. It’s far more difficult now because so many people have got to work and don’t have as much time.”

Mrs Sanderson was presented with her awards at a packed ceremony, hosted by council chairman Jessie Milne and Coun Jeff Summers, in thecouncil chamber at the Guildhall in Gainsborough.

Coun Milne was moved by the community spirit of people across the area. She said: “It was very hard to select a winner in all the categories, as those nominated have done such sterling work. There are so many peoplewho seek no reward for their outstanding effort.”

“I hope these annual awards will help recognise these people and highlight just how much work is carried out by volunteers, and how much of their free time they give up.”

Coun Summers, who put forward the idea of the Community Awards, said: “Our first Community Awards was, for me, a resounding success.”

Other award winners included Cathy Andrews from Hackthorn who picked up the Volunteer of the Year 2012 winner and the Caistor Area Champion 2012 was Louise Drakes from Keelby, for her hard work with the cubs and beavers and the allotment association.