Special Newington people have been recognised for their kindness, generosity, vitality and loyalty, with the installation of plaques in the area. Celebrating local people who have made a difference to their community. People United and a group of local residents, Big History Ambassadors, have hung four plaques in the community to inspire others to make a positive difference to their community as part of a project funded by Heritage Lottery Fund.
Those nominated were Pam Bellingham, Keith Young, Dame Janet Stancomb-Wills and the volunteers of Newington Community Centre (past, present and future) for their outstanding services to the Newington community.
Sarah Fox, Creative Producer for People United said:
“It is such a pleasure to be able to honour local people who, through their kindness, compassion and empathy for other people have made a positive contribution to the place they lived in. We hope the plaques will be an inspiration to others to continue this generosity of spirit.”
The plaque nominees or their representatives and family members attended an event at Newington Community Centre in April to see the plaques for the first time.
L to R Jill Snowdon, Marie Thomas, Pam Bellingham, Elise Howard
Pam Bellingham who has been honoured for her role in opening Newington’s first dance school and Brownie’s group in the 1950’s, attended with her husband Derek Bellingham, sister Gill Ralph (one of the original Brownies) and daughters Karen Hunt and Rebecca Bellingham and granddaughters Emilia Hunt and Niamh Bellingham and shared photographs and stories of the time she set up the groups for children and young people.
Pam in her Girlguiding uniform (aged 12) meeting Princess Margaret on her visit celebrating the 1,000th home built in Newington in 1950.
Keith Young, remembered as a kind butcher who always believed the best of people, was represented by his sister Jill Snowdon, step granddaughter Rachael Goodwill and granddaughter, who fondly remembered Keith as someone who cared about the people in the community.
Jill Snowdon, Keith’s sister said:
“Thank you for inviting us to the presentation. It was lovely being there albeit very emotional, but wonderful knowing that my brother’s kindness and generosity to people of the Newington Community had not gone unnoticed and had been appreciated, we felt very proud and it would have meant the world to him.”
Teachers Elise Howard and Alex Bole from Dame Janet Primary Academy represented Dame Janet Stancomb-Wills whose many acts of generosity included the purchase of the land for their school.
Marie Thomas, from Newington Community Centre collected the plaque honouring those who work hard to give something positive to the community by volunteering at the Community Centre.
The plaques have now been installed in their permanent positions.
At St Christopher’s Church:
The Best of Us: Vitality
Here in this church Pam Clements, wishing to provide fun activities for children, opened Newington’s first dance school and Brownies group in 1955. Pam was 17 years old.
At The Spar in Newington:
The Best of Us: Kindness
An exceptionally kind butcher at Young’s in Newington Centre for 50 years, Keith Young always believed in the best of people. His kindness and generosity was treasured by the community who were both his customers and friends.
At Dame Janet Primary Academy:
The Best of Us: Generosity
Dedicated to Dame Janet Stancomb-Wills whose determination, pride and achievements are inspiring. Amongst many acts of generosity for Ramsgate, Dame Janet bought this land and donated it for this school.
At Newington Community Centre:
The Best of Us: Loyalty
In gratitude to all of the people who have generously donated their time; past, present and future, creating a welcoming community centre for all.
This project is part of The Best of Us, a community-led arts project in Newington, Ramsgate supported by People United, and Newington Big Local. For more information, visit The Best of Us
You can see the images collected on the Newington online archive at: Seas Photography
Do you have any images? Please contact [email protected] if you would like to be put in contact with the archivist.
Project funded by Heritage Lottery Fund, Newington Big Local, Local Trust, Big Lottery Fund