Good deeds by neighbours get rich rewards

STARS OF THE COMMUNITY All the winners from the Good Neighbours awards ceremony''Picture: Ross Lucas-Young
STARS OF THE COMMUNITY All the winners from the Good Neighbours awards ceremony''Picture: Ross Lucas-Young

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EVERYBODY needs good neighbours.

And fortunately there are many great neighbours living in Hampshire.

Around 40 neighbours and volunteers were recognised for their contribution to their local community at Hampshire County Council’s Celebrating Good Neighbour Awards.

Nominees included people who have difficulties and suffer from ill health themselves, but still find time to take neighbours to medical appointments, cook meals, do some gardening or DIY for them, or call in for a chat with lonely or house-bound neighbours.

Now in their eleventh year, the awards took place at a ceremony in the Great Hall, 
Winchester.

Laurie Cureton, 92, of Park Road, Purbrook, was given an award after many years of helping Waterlooville resident Jane Remmington.

Laurie first helped Jane’s husband, John Remmington, when he developed 
Parkinson’s.

After Mr Remmington died, Mr Cureton helped Jane, who is disabled.

Mr Cureton, a retired university lecturer, said: ‘I have helped her for years, helping her tend her husband’s grave, tending her mother’s grave, and taking her shopping.

‘I have really been her personal assistant because she needs me.’

Mr Cureton, who is a Quaker, was not able to attend the ceremony after recently having a stroke, but his wife Mary Cureton collected it for him.

He added: ‘I have spent a lifetime helping people.

‘I was brought up to do it. My father was a lifelong socialist and always helping people. It’s just in my blood.’

Among the local winners were Steven Packham and Christine Vallender, from Fareham, Bianca Nicholson, who was nominated by a Fareham resident, and Alex Finch, Steve Protheroe and Andy Lee, who are all members of Rowlands Castle Flood Action Group.

One of the group winners were Jill Hewitt and Daphne Youngs, from Rowlands Castle Good Neighbours.

Sarah Human, a spokeswoman for Hampshire County Council, said: ‘The awards enable the county council to recognise the great commitment and kindness of individuals and voluntary groups in the 
community.’