Brown Owl Among Unsung Heroes

Gwen Sanderson who received a community award for running a Brownie pack at Fir Vale.
Gwen Sanderson who received a community award for running a Brownie pack at Fir Vale.

A WOMAN who has given much of her life to brownies in Sheffield has been honoured as one of the unsung heroes of her community.

Gwen Sanderson ran a brownie pack at St Cuthbert’s Church in Fir Vale from the early 50s until she was forced to retire at the age of 65 in 1997.

“I enjoyed every bit of it,” she said. “There have been some lovely girls, and I have been supported by some really good parents.”

Gwen, who lives with husband Sandy in Vickers Road, Firth Park, was nominated for a North East Community Assembly ‘Heart of the Community’ award by Wendy Skelton of Wincobank.

Wendy said: “I was in Gwen’s first Brownie pack in 1951 and the guidance she gave us then has stood the test of time. She taught me the value of giving before you receive. We are the people we are today because of the support we received from Gwen in our younger lives.”

Other winners were the High Flyers Youth Group, which helps to keep young people off the streets and Ricky Bennett, who has just retired after 25 years with the Sheffield and District Afro Caribbean Community Association.

Others are Linda Daniels, who is committed to the Tenants and Residents Association on the Brushes estate, Andrea Hardy, who is involved in many community projects and organising festivals in the Firth Park area, Penny Rea, who runs a youth group and has raised funds and helped to refurbish Wincobank Chapel and Peter Wade, who has been involved with Shiregreen and District Community Association for over 30 years.

Also named are Joe Oglesby, leader of Wincobank scout group, Paul Ward, who has contributed to a local art project , Lisa Harman, who has been the top performing Stop Smoking worker for three years, Norma Ashmore, “who lives and breathes Parson Cross” and has just retired after working in the community for many years and Alice Grant, “an inspiration” to North Sheffield Carers Group.