Today, we reveal the name of the winner of the Ripon Community Diamond award.
Independent judges, the Mayor of Ripon Councillor Eamon Parkin and the Bishop of Ripon, the Rt. Revd. Dr Helen-Ann Hartley, had a socially-distanced meeting over the weekend to consider the nominations.
They decided the award would go to Suzanne Bowyer, who works at Community House in Allhallowgate, Ripon.
Since the first lockdown in March, Suzanne and a colleague have been focusing on the crucial role of keeping families and individuals fed.
Caroline Bentham, who nominated her, said:
“Suzanne and a colleague took over the food banks in March, when those who were running them had to give up and shield.
“They have had to deal with calls from the public who are trying to access the services that normally use Community House.
“Suzanne has helped mums at the end of their tether, who can’t get hold of a health visitor. She and her colleague do their work quietly, with no ‘look at me, aren’t we great attitude.”
Cllr Parkin told the Stray Ferret:
“It was heart-warming to read all the nominations and see the way in which people have gone the extra mile to help others in these difficult times.
“We read about the kindness shown to children, the elderly and disabled, hungry families and people just needing a helping hand.”
Dr Hartley added:
“It was a difficult task because of the very high standard of nominee that we had to select from.
“We congratulate all nominees and thank those who nominated them.”
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Throughout January, readers of the Stray Ferret were able to nominate a person who lives or works in the Ripon area, saying why they thought their nominee deserved the title of community diamond.
As well as the honour of being named as the city’s community diamond, Suzanne will receive a fabulous prize worth up to £1,000, donated by Red Buttons Jewellers and Hedley Hall.
Red Buttons, which shares The Vintage Room premises in Queen Street, Ripon, with Mr Hall and his antiques, collectables and vintage models business, will create, for the winner, a customised piece of jewellery, featuring the diamond in a gold or white gold setting.
The presentation to Suzanne will be arranged when The Vintage Room is back open after the current Covid lockdown is lifted.