For 40 years Barrie Ames has dedicated himself to working with the Woking branch of PHAB. And his efforts have been rewarded with a nomination for a lifetime achievement award.
Barrie was one of the guests of honour at a reception for nominees of the Paul Hope Award at the House of Lords where he was presented with a certificate in recognition of his tireless efforts.
During his four decades working with the Physically Handicapped and Able Bodied charity he has run weekly meetings, organised group holidays, organised and taken part in fund raising events – and met his wife Beverley!
“We met on a group week away to Holland,” said Barrie. “We got chatting on the first day and by the time we came back we were a couple. We got engaged a week later and have been married for 20 years.
“We run the local branch together – although she does far more than I do and should really have got the credit.”
Now aged 60, Barrie, who has worked as a gardener at Elmbridge Retirement Village in Cranleigh, for 14 years, shows no signs of giving up.
“I love what I do with PHAB but the nomination came out of the blue,” said Barrie, who lives in Ash, near Aldershot. “Apparently it was one of the members of the group which nominated me but many of them are far more deserving.”
The PHAB group meets every Wednesday evening at the Maybury Centre in Woking. Newcomers are welcome. “It’s a very sociable group, we organise activities, do crafts, chat and drink coffee,” said Barrie. “We’d love to see some new members.”