Stonehaven Tolbooth Association, a group of volunteers based in Stonehaven, has been honoured with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.
The Stonehaven Tolbooth Association was founded eight years ago to re-launch the Stonehaven Tolbooth Museum which had been closed by Aberdeenshire Council in 2011. Located in the iconic setting of Stonehaven harbour the volunteers were of the belief that a thriving museum could offer much to the local community and to visitors. This view has been borne out by the annual footfall now in excess of 24,000 and mention in numerous travel guides including the UK version of the Lonely Planet Guide 2019
Representatives from the Association will attend a garden party at Holyrood Palace in July, along with other recipients of this year’s award.
Stonehaven Tolbooth Association is one of 281 charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the prestigious award this year. The number of nominations and awards has increased year on year since the awards were introduced in 2002, showing that the voluntary sector is thriving and full of innovative ideas to make life better for those around them.
Representatives of Stonehaven Tolbooth Association will receive the award from Mrs Carol Kinghorn, Lord Lieutenant of Kincardineshire later this summer.
The Chair of Stonehaven Tolbooth Association (Cressida Coates) said:
“We are delighted to receive this award, especially as we are a very young organisation. Our volunteers have worked tirelessly and dedicated many hours to creating an exciting attraction which is a magnet for tourists and locals alike. Without their dedication it is doubtful whether the museum would exist and we regard this award as a tribute to their hard work and commitment”
The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service aims to recognise outstanding work by volunteer groups to benefit their local communities. It was created in 2002 to celebrate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee. Winners are announced each year on 2 June – the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation. Award winners this year are wonderfully diverse. They include volunteers helping people overcome mental health problems through sport, volunteers using caravans as mobile cafe/information centres in geographically remote locations and another group mentoring children who have a parent in prison.
Pictured above are volunteers Shona Barclay, Ian Balgowan and Jean Skinner