Thanksgiving Service and awards in Rustington

Auriel Wakeling receives the Parishioners' Award from Rustington Parish Council chairman Alison Cooper
Auriel Wakeling receives the Parishioners' Award from Rustington Parish Council chairman Alison Cooper

COMMUNITY awards have been handed out as part of at Rustington Parish Council’s annual Thanksgiving Service.

The service was conducted by Father Dominic O’Hara at St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church on Sunday, September 20, and the awards reception took place afterwards at The Woodlands Centre.

Rustington Parish Council's annual Thanksgiving Service

Rustington Parish Council's annual Thanksgiving Service

Presentations were made for outstanding floral displays in private front gardens and business premises, as well as excellently cultivated allotment plots.

Guests included Sir Peter Bottomley MP, Arun District Council chairman Andy Cooper and a number of other councillors from Angmering, Bognor Regis, East Preston, Littlehampton, Rustington, West Sussex County Council and Arun District Council.

Carole Ward, clerk of the council, said: “One of the highlights of the evening was the presentation of the Parishioners’ Award, which was awarded to Mrs Auriel Wakeling, in recognition of her outstanding commitment and dedication to Rustington Residents’ Association, and a number of other local community groups and organisations, for many years.”

Parish council chairman Alison Cooper concluded the ceremony by announcing Rustington’s outstanding achievements in the South and South East in Bloom competition, which included a Gold Award and the Overall Winner Award in the town centre category.

Woodlands Recreation Ground was presented with a Gold Award in the Park of the Year category. The Sussex Life County Award for the entry with the highest marks across Sussex was also awarded to Rustington.

The Trustees’ Discretionary Award was presented to the Oak Community Project and the Judges’ Special Outstanding Contribution Award went to Courtenay Luscombe of Ferring Nurseries, in recognition of his unceasing commitment to the In-Bloom campaign for many years.

In the It’s Your Neighbourhoods category, The Chaucery Memorial, Oakhurst Gardens and The Hidden Twitten all received outstanding awards. The Methodist Church Garden followed closely with a Thriving Award, and the first-time entry Acorns to Oaks achieved an Establishing Award.

Mrs Cooper also presented South and South East in Bloom Certificates of Excellence to Georgian Gardens Community Primary School, Rustington Methodist Church Garden, The Oak Community Project, Rustington Community Partnership, Rustington Horticultural Association, Summerlea Community Primary School, The Chaucery Memorial, 1st Rustington Scout Group Forest Beavers, Rustington Community Primary School, Youth Offending Team, Little Explorers Pre-School, St Peter and St Paul Church.

Mrs Ward added: “Special thanks and appreciation were also conveyed to Ferring Nurseries, without whose outstanding service, expertise and dedication, the village’s remarkable success would, as has been the case in previous years, most certainly not have been achieved.”

Mrs Cooper said she was delighted the work and achievements of local groups, organisations and individuals for the benefit of the community was being duly recognised, by way of the awards presented, at what could only be described as ‘a most pleasant social event’, now well established in the council’s annual calendar.

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