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.

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