THERE has been a triple celebration for a North Cotswolds Rotary club.

Rotary in the Rissingtons celebrated its first anniversary on January 23 at Upper Rissington Village Hall. Members and guests were there to celebrate the club’s achievements in its first year.

Andrew Mitchell, chairman of Rotary in the Rissingtons, reviewed these achievements that included building an allotment garden from scratch at The Rissington School, creating an area where pupils can learn to cultivate and grow plants and see them grow.

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Members also held Purple4Polio events at The Rissington School’s sites in both Upper and Great Rissington. Purple4Polio is a Rotary initiative in Great Britain and Ireland to raise funds and awareness for efforts to eradicate polio across the world.

The group has given its time and expertise to support other local projects, including supporting several of North Cotswolds Rotary’s events throughout the year. Thanking members for their help, John Barber, president of North Cotswolds Rotary, said: “Without support from Rotary in the Rissingtons, we would not have been able to stage some of our major events.”

To mark the first anniversary of the club, those living in the four Rissington villages were asked to nominate someone who had given outstanding service to the local community.

A panel considered nominations before making their choice of the person most deserving to receive the Brian Honess Community Award. The award is named after a long-serving past member of North Cotswolds Rotary, Brian Honess, who did so much for the community and who died in 2018.

The first winner of the award was Jackie Oliver, a resident of Upper Rissington, honoured for her many hours of voluntary work nurturing and developing the village hall garden and surrounding areas for all to enjoy. Mary Honess was delighted to present the award named after her late husband.

Another highlight of the evening was a short presentation by Jocelyn Jeary, 12. She has been associated with Rotary in the Rissingtons from its inauguration and was leader of The Cotswold School’s Interact Club, supported by Rotary.

She has just written and published a book called ‘Jade’, a magical adventure story loosely about the transition from primary to secondary school, but with an important underlying message about the need to protect and save trees and forests from further destruction by humans hoping to make a quick profit. Jocelyn plans to give 15 per cent of any profit she makes from sales of her book, soon to available on Amazon, to her chosen charity.

Mr Mitchell said at the meeting: “We should be proud of Rotary in the Rissingtons which has achieved what it set out to do and we look forward with enthusiasm to serving the community in the year ahead."

Rotary in the Rissingtons meets at 7.30pm on the second and fourth Thursday of the month at Upper Rissington Village Hall. New members are welcome.

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