Marilyn is a real star
11:30am Sunday 25th August 2013 in Latest News
AFTER 30 years of doing what she calls a hobby, a prolific community volunteer has been named the pride of Penhill.
Marilyn Beale, 68, of Avebury Road, has been involved with almost all community volunteer projects in Penhill at some stage, after starting out as a simple gardener at John Moulton Hall in Penhill Drive.
Almost all of the community groups, volunteers and residents the Adver visited on the roadshow this week spoke highly of Marilyn and the work she has done to keep projects running, encourage more people to get involved and help with raising funds.
Marilyn’s proudest achievements include achieving nature reserve designation for Seven Fields as a part of the Seven Fields Conservation Group and opening up an orchard at the end of Westbury Road.
“It’s been my hobby for 30 years. I started off just being nagged by my sister to help out with some gardening in John Moulton Hall, and it all came out of that,” said Marilyn.
Marilyn struck up a relationship with the Penhill Community Association in her early days of volunteer work and shared many of the interests the group was looking to promote in the area.
The Penhill Neighbourhood Centre, which no longer exists, was her next stop, where administrative duties commanded much of her time.
Once she left the neighbourhood centre, Marilyn began to take on a more serious role within the PCA once again, where her energies were focused upon preserving Seven Fields.
Today, Marilyn is secretary of Penhill Forum, an organisation trying to co-ordinate the various volunteer efforts around the area, secretary of the Seven Fields Conservation Group and Penhill Community Orchard.
“I grew up in Rodbourne, where everybody was keen to help each other, and I think I took that approach and tried to use it as a resident in Penhill,” she said.
“There was a very active community in Penhill when I started, and that still exists today, which makes it far easier when you do try to do things to improve the area.
“There are younger people coming forward now, which is so nice to see.
“It means this work being done around the area will continue long after we are gone.”
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