Friday, 24 February 2012

Local heroes in the frame in Stafford

Local heroes are going to be given a wall of honour as part of 2012 celebrations.

Worthy people who have been nominated to carry the Olympic torch or switch on the Christmas Lights - and those whose good deeds for the community have gone unnoticed, will be part of a community display in Stafford Borough.

The borough council is planning to post photographs at a secret location on the route of the Olympic Torch which is travelling through Gnosall, Haughton and Stafford on 30 May as part of the UK relay. It will include pictures of community champions, volunteers, helpers or anyone who has made a contribution to improving borough life.

Scores of people from Stafford Borough were nominated to carry the Olympic torch although names of the successful nominees are not being released until late next month by the ‘Games’ organisers. But the borough council wanted to make sure the achievements of many of the unsuccessful nominees would also be recognised.

The council is no stranger to celebrating community stars. Since 2010 it has asked residents to pick a hero connected with the borough to switch on the lights. Last year a mammoth charity fundraiser, running paramedic Ray Edensor, was the people’s choice, with hero cop David Rathband - who was left blinded after being shot by on the run gunman Raoul Moat - doing the honours the year before.

“There are many names that have been put forward to be a torchbearer or to turn on the Christmas lights and unfortunately not all these deserving people will be chosen,” said Mike Smith, cabinet member for leisure at the borough council.

“Our borough has often been described as the volunteering capital of the country because of the number of selfless people giving up their time to help others and we want to try and make sure all of those receive our thanks.

“We will be introducing a roll of honour on our website to name these mainly unsung heroes with a short description of why they should be there. But we are also planning to collect photographs of them, their community, or events they are associated with and show them for the world to see at a secret location on the route of the Olympic torch.”

If you want to nominate someone then email 2012@staffordbc.gov.uk , or write to 2012, Civic Centre, Riverside, Stafford, ST16 3AQ with your nominee, which part of the borough they live, a brief description of why they deserve to be included and your contact details.

The borough council has been asking people to tell them about their plans to put on events such as street parties, fetes and dances for 2012 to mark the Diamond Jubilee and Olympic Games. They have also waived the normal £100 fee for anyone who needs to close a road to stage an event.

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