A dedicated volunteer who has given more than 30 years of service to Garstang has waved goodbye to the town and left for pastures new.
Laura Nixon, who has been involved with the WVRS luncheon club, British Legion and, for 17 years, Garstang’s Slimming World group, has hung up her hat and “retired” to Warrington.
Since moving to the town in 1976 after marrying husband Bill, Laura has lent herself to numerous community roles, from being Legion secretary to luncheon club chef and weigh-in lady at the slimming club.
The 79-year-old, a great grandmother of 12, said: “I honestly don’t know how I got into it (volunteering). People just seemed to ask me and I thought ‘that doesn’t sound bad’. I have enjoyed everything I have done.
“And that’s been the key really – and the fact I like being with people.”
The former Ribble Bus Company worker has been honoured with numerous awards for her services.
She has even been invited to Downing Street and a Buckingham Palace garden party in recognition of her volunteering efforts.
As well as her Garstang duties, Laura has also given 30 years’ service to the Toc H Holiday Club, providing meals for underprivileged children.
Laura lost husband Bill in 2008, but had no desire to leave Garstang until suffering an accident at Christmas.
She has since moved to Warrington to be closer to her son, Stephen, and his family.
She added: “It has been a very big wrench. After Bill died, my family asked if I wanted to move and I wasn’t ready. I had a wide circle of friends and was very active.
“But I knew in the back of my mind I would have to move eventually,just later rather than sooner.”
Friends and fellow volunteers rallied round to give Laura a very special send-off and with a collection of vouchers given she has bought a new camera to take lots of pictures of the family’s latest addition.
Nicola Evans, leader of Garstang Slimming World added: “She is a remarkable lady at 79 years young and has done a fantastic job over the years.”