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Say thank you to our local heroes!

PUBLISHED: 11:35 05 June 2009 | UPDATED: 09:56 06 July 2010

NOMINEE: Lydia Ward

NOMINEE: Lydia Ward

A 90-YEAR-OLD neighbour, a stalwart community worker and a donkey lover are amongst the latest nominations for our Pride in the Community Awards 2009.

Lydia Ward has been nominated as Entrepreneur of the Year for having the innovation to bring back donkeys to Lowestoft beach after 40 years.

A 90-YEAR-OLD neighbour, a stalwart community worker and a donkey lover are amongst the latest nominations for our Pride in the Community Awards 2009.

Lydia Ward has been nominated as Entrepreneur of the Year for having the innovation to bring back donkeys to Lowestoft beach after 40 years.

In looking after Billy, Henry, Korky and Noddy, she can often be seen sharing her packed lunch with them during a well-earned break on the beach, or at fetes and fairs.

She was nominated by Melanie Seager who said: “Lydia is a happy, bubbly lady who has strived for two years to get her licence to put these beautiful, gentle animals back to where they belong, bringing joy and happiness to young and old alike.”

Irene Dickens has highlighted Molly Bennet as a deserved community hero for her work with the Beccles St Raphael Club.

Mrs Dickens, who is part of the club, said that during the 10 years she has known Molly she has always put others first.

Irene said: “There are between 30 and 35 members, most of them with some incapacity, but we meet fortnightly at the May Centre. Both she and her husband Roger, who drives the bus to collect us, arrange outings, speakers to come to the club and a holiday each year at Pontins.

“She does a lot for St Luke's Church, providing a hot meal fortnightly for the community and again always willing to lend a hand.”

Gwyneth Bickers thinks her neighbour Alva Smith should be crowned Kind Neighbour of the Year for her community spirit to everyone that lives close by.

Mrs Bickers said when she moved into the same block of flats as Alva, in Oulton Broad, she was extremely helpful with her advice and support.

“Alva is always someone you are glad to see about, in the garden or anywhere. Her husband has been gone now for a long time, but she has always been a cheerful soul and helpmate, which I can verify being a widow myself.”

The awards are being held on Tuesday, July 7, at Pleasurewood Hills, who are sponsoring the awards for the third year running.

A drinks reception and buffet will be held by the lake at the park in Leisure Way, Lowestoft, before a Circus and Tango show in the Castle Theatre and the awards ceremony hosted by Journal editor Russell Cook and Pleasurewood manager Yves Delhommeau.

The closing date is creeping up so now is the time to get your nominations in to make sure the person you want to be recognised is considered for an award.

Our aim is to reward the many unsung heroes in Lowestoft, Southwold, Beccles, Bungay and Halesworth, who would never actively seek publicity.

They are the sorts of people who go about their business in a quiet and modest way, helping others and making a difference to their community.

It might be a friend, family member, colleague or acquaintance that you think fits the criteria of one of our 10 categories.

All shortlisted entrants will be contacted by the end of June and are invited with members of their family to the awards ceremony.

To nominate someone for one of the nine categories, fill in the entry form in today's Journal with the category of your choice together with your name, address, daytime telephone number and if possible a recent photograph of that person.

Please also include on a separate piece of paper why you think the person you are putting forward has Pride in their Community.

Entries close on June 15, at 5pm.

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