Dedicated volunteer thanked after almost 40 years of service.

Pamela Podd with other trustees from across her time at the trust. Picture: James Bass

Pamela Podd with other trustees from across her time at the trust. Picture: James Bass - Credit: James Bass

A dedicated volunteer who set up a village lunch club for older people has been thanked by the community at her retirement – after almost 40 years of service.

Friends and fellow volunteers say Pamela Podd had 'put her heart and love into Gisleham' by 'providing a helping hand to those needing support in the community'.

The 82-year-old joined the Gisleham Help in Need, which supports vulnerable and isolated members of the community, in 1982.

She and Malcolm Shoote, former headteacher at Gisleham Middle School, established a monthly luncheon club at the school to serve main meals and desserts over-60s.

She went on to serve as treasuer of Gisleham Help in Need and was later chairman of the charity between September 1991 and September 1996 – with minute book records showing she never missed a meeting of the charity from 1982 up until her retirement last year.

The former veterinary surgeon, of Black Street, Gisleham, was presented with a bouquet of flowers at a tea party held at The Rectory, in Kessingland, to thank her for her work.

Gisleham Help in Need trustee Elizabeth Rivett, 76, of Black Street, Gisleham, said: 'She has dedicated all her spare time and effort into making Gisleham the community it is today. It really is a team effort, which is why we are all here to say thank you to Pam.'

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Mrs Podd said: 'The luncheon clubs were a way of giving the elder members of the community a chance to socialise with others. 'Children would serve the meals and play cards with the older residents. So the luncheon club was a great way of bridging the gap between the generations.'

Despite retiring Mrs Podd still plans to go to the lunches.

Do you know someone in the community who deserves recognition? Tell The Journal by calling 01502 525820 or email lowestoft.journal@archant.co.uk

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