Top work on Market Lavington roads and verges by village’s hero

Mike Bridgeman was chosen as the Community Minded Person of The Year for voluntary work including making a new sign for the Old School Church, inset

Mike Bridgeman was chosen as the Community Minded Person of The Year for voluntary work including making a new sign for the Old School Church, inset

First published in News by , Devizes area senior reporter

Market Lavington resident Mike Bridgeman has been awarded for his efforts in helping the community.

The 68-year-old, of Canada Rise, won the Community Minded Person of the Year, run by Market Lavington Parish Council.

More than ten people were nominated, but Mr Bridge-man was the runaway winner with more than a third of the votes cast.

Voters said he had kept the village’s grass areas mown and tidy last year.

Other voluntary work included making a new sign for the Old School day centre and advising councillors on roadworks around the village and inspecting the standard of work carried out by contractor Balfour Beatty.

He also provided training in using asphalt to councillors repairing damage to council property.

Mr Bridgeman, who is married with two children and three grandchildren, said: “It was a pleasant surprise to be given the award.

“It’s obviously very nice that people have noticed and appreciated the little bit I do round the village.

“I met lots of villagers during the course of the work and passed the time of day with them; it was very nice.”

Mr Bridgeman was the area highway manager for south Wiltshire for the county council until he retired 17 years ago.

He was a parish councillor in Market Lavington for five years and his hobbies include playing golf at Upavon and short mat bowls in Market Lavington.

Former parish council chairman Colin Osborn said the award was introduced in 2008, when Di Lunn was the chairman of the council.

The parish council invites nominations from parishioners and these are collected in a box in the Post Office. Whoever gains the most nominations is awarded the prize.

Mr Osborn said: “Di Lunn realised that living villages depend on a lot of people giving up their time to organise clubs, activities, etc.

“She also knew that most of this village support passes unnoticed and this is a way of recognising the unpaid work these people do to make this a living village.

“Since the award was instigated, I have noticed that other nearby villages and towns have started doing the same sort of thing.”

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