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Front of House Volunteers of the New Vic Theatre, Staffordshire, have been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.
The volunteer team at the New Vic provide support and assistance for audiences visiting the theatre for performances and events. Providing a warm welcome to all visitors and ensuring the safety of audience members during performances, the Volunteers are vital to the New Vic community and contributed to the theatre being awarded ‘Most Welcoming Theatre – West Midlands’ at the UK Theatre Awards 2018.
Representatives from the volunteer team attended a garden party at Buckingham Palace in May, along with other recipients of this year’s Award. The Front of House Volunteers of the New Vic are one of 281 charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the prestigious award this year. The number of nominations and awards has increased year on year since the awards were introduced in 2002, showing that the voluntary sector is thriving and full of innovative ideas to make life better for those around them.
Representatives of the New Vic Front of House Volunteers will receive the award from Mr Ian Dudson CBE KStJ, Lord Lieutenant of Staffordshire, later this summer.
Pam Beech, Front of House Volunteer at the New Vic Theatre said: “To be recognised for this prestigious Queen’s Award is wonderful for us as volunteers. Many of us have been volunteers at the New Vic for a long time and it is such a privilege to have our contribution to the local community, and the theatre, recognised in this way. We’re all so thrilled!
Fiona Wallace, Managing Director of the New Vic said: “Local volunteers worked to fundraise and help build the New Vic and now, over 30 years later, we couldn’t exist without them. The Front of House volunteer group is vital to delivering the work that we do and our thanks and congratulations go out to them for this award on behalf of everyone who enjoys visiting the theatre.”
The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service aims to recognise outstanding work by volunteer groups to benefit their local communities. It was created in 2002 to celebrate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee. Winners are announced each year on 2 June – the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation. Award winners this year are wonderfully diverse. They include volunteers helping people overcome mental health problems through sport, volunteers using caravans as mobile café/information centres in geographically remote locations and another group mentoring children who have a parent in prison.