With twenty years experience Marlborough LINK says "Volunteering with us is fun and rewarding!"

Written by Tony Millett on .

The Rev. Canon Henry Pearson cuts the anniversary cake

The Marlborough & District LINK Scheme have been celebrating their twentieth anniversary with an Afternoon Tea Party (May 13) at the Wesley Hall - which was decorated with balloons galore. 

LINK is a team of volunteers who assist residents - in the town and in the surrounding villages - who are elderly or incapacitated and so cannot use public transport.   They take people to the shops, to GP appointments and to hospitals, opticians, dentists, chiropodists - and to visit sick relatives and friends.

Eighty clients, guests and volunteers enjoyed a delicious “Ritz” tea served and provided by our volunteers.  They were entertained by the very talented Ray Dance and Judith Sharp who performed 'Songs from the Shows'.

The guests included Jenny Staton, the Community Transport Officer at Community First and Linda O’Gorman, once the LINK Project Manager for Community First. 

Former LINK volunteers, Ann Ticknell, Helen McKimm and Pamela Gardner were there too.

An address was given by The Rev. Canon Henry Pearson who founded of the organisation on 15 May 1997.  He recalled that we were the second LINK scheme to be established in Wiltshire . 

The need of transport within our local community prompted Henry Pearson to set up the scheme along with Sylvia Steele, who was its first co-ordinator, and Mimi Barton.  Bryan Castle was the treasurer assisted by Cyril Ford - both of whom have served LINK faithfully for the past twenty years.

Balloons galore...Balloons galore...  Mrs Janet Biggs and Mrs Jo Gay enjoying the partyMrs Janet Biggs and Mrs Jo Gay enjoying the party

Other stalwarts for LINK have been Tony O’Connell who sadly died in March, Gerald Smith, Martin Pitt and Roger Ambrose. 

LINK members pride themselves on running a Good Neighbour Scheme providing a service to the local community 'when they can, how they can and if they can'. 

Volunteer drivers - who get a mileage allowance - covered almost 4,000 miles last year and it is not unusual to help as many as 35 people in a day. 

As with so many local charities, LINK is now in 'desperate need' of more volunteers drivers and co-ordinators.  They also need 'handy persons' such as gardeners, electricians and plumbers to help in a practical way those in need of that bit of extra support at home. 

For more details readers can contact Vicky Sullivan on 01672 513232 or via their website.

The assembled volunteers and committee membersThe assembled volunteers and committee members