Volunteer of the Year honour for community fridge champion from Carrickfergus

A Carrickfergus volunteer has been recognised for her commitment to the community as part of the Mid and East Antrim In Bloom initiative.

Monday, 1st November 2021, 1:13 pm
Volunteer of the Year winner Carly Ogilvie (right).

Carly Ogilvie, who has worked with council throughout 2021 to establish the first community fridge in the borough at Eden Allotment Gardens, received the Volunteer of the Year award.

Announcing the winners, the Mayor of Mid & East Antrim, Councillor William McCaughey, said: “These awards are specifically for the individuals, groups or businesses who have shown long term commitment to improving their local community via clean ups, green ups, and in bloom activities, and who go above and beyond for the borough.

“Thanks to Carly’s dedication and infectious enthusiasm, the project has been a huge success. Carly leads a team of 20 volunteers who manage the day-to-day running of the fridge including collecting donations from Tesco, Asda, Hendersons, Co-Op and Marks & Spencer. With lots of lovely items available most days including fruit, vegetables and cut flowers, the fridge is cleared most days ensuring no food goes to waste. Carly has even begun passing on her advice to other interested volunteers across the borough so look out for more community fridges opening near you.”

The Mayor, Councillor William McCaughey, with volunteers from Brighter Whitehead who have received an award for their outstanding contribution to In Bloom.

Meanwhile, the ‘Outstanding Contribution to in Bloom’ award went to Brighter Whitehead has been cheering up the seaside town with colourful planting since 1995.

The Mayor added: “With a first year budget of only £450 and only six members, they’ve come a long way. Today, they have thirty volunteers, their own polytunnels, a branded vehicle and many businesses supporting their activities to make Whitehead a place worth living in, visiting and investing in.

“In their polytunnel, Brighter Whitehead grow a range of flowers which are then displayed around Whitehead in planters and hanging baskets. Whitehead has entered the regional Translink Ulster in Bloom competition each year since 1995 with many awards being won, and has represented Northern Ireland at the UK-wide RHS Britain in Bloom awards twelve times – blooming brilliant!”

The winners of the borough’s junior In Bloom awards were recently announced too.

St Anthony's Nursery was runner up in the Best School Gardening Project.

The winner of the Blooming Creative Competition was seven-year-old Abigail Best from Greenisland with her drawing of a sunflower. The runners up were four-year-old Cameron Shepherd from Larne with his painting of blooms and five-year-old Carson McDowell, from Carrickfergus, with his abstract painting of flowers.

Woodburn Primary School in Carrickfergus bagged the accolade of Best School Gardening Project this year after creating a new sensory garden and outdoor learning space. The runners up were Carrickfergus Academy and St Anthony’s Nursery School in Larne.


Click here to read: Mid and East Antrim in Bloom Community Competition prize winners are announced

Carrickfergus Academy was runner up in the Best School Gardening Project category at the junior In Bloom awards.


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Woodburn Primary School's new garden.