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High Sheriff of Norfolk to crown King’s Lynn volunteers Local Food Heroes


High Sheriff of Norfolk to crown King’s Lynn volunteers Local Food Heroes

Two volunteers have won an award for their outstanding contribution to developing community food-growing skills in King’s Lynn. The volunteers are members of Master Gardener – Norfolk.

Lally Lee and Herbie Knight fought off all their competitors to be named Local Food Heroes 2013 for the Eastern region of England, as part of an initiative run by Local Food, a £59.8m scheme that distributes grants from the Big Lottery Fund to projects helping to make locally grown food accessible and affordable to communities.

During a celebratory community event at 3pm on Friday 9th August, Lally and Herbie will be presented with their trophy by the High Sheriff of Norfolk, Lady Sarah Leicester, along with representatives from Local Food. The event will take place at King’s Lynn Community Allotment, The Walks Park, King’s Lynn, Norfolk, PE30 1PE.

Since 2009, the Master Gardener project has received £674,254 in funding from Local Food to develop a practical model for a volunteer support network to encourage and mentor people and communities to grow fruit and vegetables in their gardens and on local communal land. This has involved the recruitment of a co-ordination team based in Warwickshire, London and Norfolk, who have trained and supported 475 Master Gardeners who have given 18,500 hours to promote home food production. The volunteers have impacted on the lives of 4,300 people in mentored ‘households’ and another 52,000 people through workshops and other support for local groups.

Norfolk’s 95 Master Gardeners have given 2,800 hours nurturing new food-growing skills for 910 people. They engaged in 9,440 food-growing conversations at workshops and various community events in towns and villages across Norfolk.

Gabbie Joyce, Norfolk Coordinator for the Master Gardener project, nominated Lally and Herbie for a Local Food Hero award because of their fantastic, voluntary contribution to the day to day work of the new community allotment in King’s Lynn, and their enthusiasm, commitment and reliability.

To read more about their contribution, click here: http://www.localfoodgrants.org/heroes?cid=50&aid=8452

The pair were initially shortlisted as a finalist by a Local Food panel, and then competed against one other finalist in the Eastern region in a public vote to decide the winner. Thousands of people across the country voted for a Local Food Hero, in one or more regions of England, by visiting the Local Food website.

 Gabbie Joyce, Norfolk Coordinator for the Master Gardener project, said:

Lally and Herbie are excellent Master Gardeners, supporting novice growers who want to volunteer at the allotment, holding community events and seed-sowing demonstrations, and also offering food growing advice and mentorship to households. They are an asset to our project and we are thrilled to see them recognised as Local Food Heroes.”

Mark Wheddon, Local Food Programme Manager, said:

Since we opened the Local Food programme in 2008, we’ve heard many wonderful anecdotes about the fantastic contribution that members of the community are making to ensure the success of their local projects. So we decided to celebrate and recognise some of these unsung heroes by encouraging projects to nominate the ordinary people doing extraordinary things. We had a great response, and are delighted to present Lally and Herbie with this very well-deserved award. They are true Local Food Heroes – inspiring to others and champions of the benefits of food growing. It is thanks to groups of people like these that our projects are going beyond the aim of making local food more accessible and affordable, and are building community capacity across England.”

Read about other great work by Norfolk Master Gardeners across the county.

Master Gardener are active across the country.  Find out more about our sister programmes.

Come and say hello to your local Master Gardener at an event near you this summer.

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