Public Sector Heroes Awarded

A County Council officer was one of two public sector heroes recently been recognised at a national award ceremony in London.

The Locality Public Sector Hero Awards honour individuals who go above and beyond the call of duty to serve their local community. This year the remarkable efforts of both a Somerset County Council staff member and a volunteer from Martock were recognised during the event in Westminster.

Jon Bazley, a Community Development Officer for Somerset County Council, and Roger Powell, a volunteer who runs the “Martock Our Place” project, both picked up an award for their unswerving support to Somerset’s communities.

Jon, who lives in the Taunton area, was nominated for supporting communities and helping them work in partnership with the council and other agencies. This followed his hard work and dedication during the Somerset Level floods, when he acted as the link between services and local people.

Jon said: “The role of the voluntary and community sector in working alongside statutory services is of huge importance – both nationally and here within Somerset. The County Council has a long history of successful joint work with this sector, and as we adapt our services to make them more community-focused there is enormous potential for us to learn from, and work with, these community-based voluntary agencies.

“This was particularly seen during the 2013-2014 flooding crisis, and we have been able to build on this experience over the last 18 months to good effect.”

Roger was nominated for his work with the community in Martock, all of which is done voluntarily. He said: “It was an honour to receive this award on behalf of the Our Place Martock project, which aims to improve the health and wellbeing of those in need in our community and to raise awareness of how we can make Martock an even more caring place to live in.

“This is very much not an award just for me, but for all those involved with the project, particular our amazing frontline staff and volunteers in Martock to are making lives better every day and are the real heroes.”

Locality is a national network of community-led organizations. Their Public Sector Hero Awards are there to recognize the shining examples of good practice – the individuals who go above and beyond the call of duty to help the local voluntary and community sector.