Four Horbury residents have been recognised by the Rotary Club of Horbury and Ossett Phoenix for their long term commitment and contribution to local community life. All four were invited for a meal at the Rotary Club meeting where they were each presented with a framed certificate, trophy, and a celebratory bottle of wine, as a memento of their evening and acknowledging all they have done.

Wendie and David Wilby in recognition of their unstinting and selfless work for over 20 years with Horbury Pageant Players, and providing development opportunities to many people in our community.
Wendie and David had experienced life on stage in Ossett, Wendie in amateur dramatics and David as a choir member. 22 years ago the Horbury amateur theatre group, Horbury Pageant Players, asked Wendie to stand in at short notice after one of the cast had to drop out due to illness two weeks before a show. She soon learned the script and the show went on to be a great success.

Further acting parts followed before she changed role and became that of Producer/Director which involved sourcing the script, and organising auditions and rehearsals many months before the curtain goes up, and most importantly, directing the cast and crew. Up until a few years ago the group would present the pantomime in February plus a musical review in the summer, quite a commitment. All this wouldn't have been possible without the help and dedication of countless other volunteers over the years.

Husband David, being a loyal supporter, soon found that his joinery skills were required, making scenery and props, having learned how things worked back stage, he gradually moved into the difficult co-ordinating role of Stage Manager.

Over the twenty two years that Wendie and David had been involved with the Horbury Pageant Players, hundreds of people from the local community, from the very young to the more mature, have been on stage, gaining experiences which have boosted their confidence and skills for life. A few have gone on to study at RADA in London.

Having retired from the stage in 2018 Wendie and David were able to relax by attending the opening night of the 2019 pantomime. When presented with their award they modestly pointed out that the Pageant Players Group could not present the productions it has over its 72 year existence without the help of countless volunteers, players and of course public support.

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Debora Smith was recognised for her commitment, energy and enthusiasm to promote community activities in the Horbury area

Debora’s commitment to the community of Horbury began over a decade ago when she first moved into the village and became a Leader for the local Beavers, a role which still takes up much of her free time.
She is a founder member of the Horbury W.I. taking a leading role as their first President and working hard to recruit new members to a very lively and proactive group. She has continued her involvement as the Treasurer.
Notwithstanding a full time job and her already extensive time commitments to the community, Debora has also undertaken a rigorous and exhausting training regime to take part in various half and full marathons, fundraising for the Haven, a local Breast Cancer support centre. She was also one of the brave competitors committing to a 12 week training programme for the Strictly Come Dancing event at Horbury School raising money for Breast Cancer Care.
Debora demonstrates a deep desire to make a difference to all communities and has recently completed an induction programme to be a Magistrate.

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Julie Yarrow was recognised for her dedication and commitment to the people and community of Horbury by working to provide outstanding facilities and signposting opportunities

Julie began her involvement with Horbury the community of Horbury & District over a decade ago as the Wakefield Express local correspondent which entailed her connecting with local groups to promote events and activities in the area. Along with her partner and others she was also actively involved in the Friends of Carr Lodge Park which led to the creation of the existing childrens play area.
The knowledge and contacts she developed as our local correspondent proved invaluable as she became part of the organising team for the Horbury Craft and Street Fayre, an annual community event giving local groups the opportunity to promote their activities and crafts. This brought many visitors into Horbury and is one of the key summer events in the local calendar.
As a homeowner in Horbury, in 2008 she was elected as a Trustee of the Horbury Common Lands Trust, which is one of the oldest grant making Trusts in the country offering financial support to the people and fabric of Horbury.
Julie has worked for many years as a volunteer at the Community Centre and with her tenacity and drive has been a constant strength in developing the Cluntergate Centre. As a Trustee of the Horbury Community Centre Trust, Julie was one of the central figures in seeking and obtaining significant grants for the recent refurbishment.

Within every community there are the movers and shakers and there are those who just do and Julie Yarrow is certainly one of those who quietly works in the background, seeking no public recognition but deserving the acknowledgment she shuns.

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The awards were presented by the current Horbury and Ossett Phoenix Rotary President Alan Hudders and seen on the left of the photos is Club member and Past President Ian Rayner who not only coordinated the research on the candidates but also organised and compered the Presentation Evening. A big thankyou to him for his hard work.

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