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Frome Person of the Year 2014

THE nominees for Frome Times’ Person of the Year 2014 competition have been compiled, and now readers are being asked to cast their vote on who they think should be crowned the winner. In our last issue, Frome Times asked readers to nominate their ‘Person of the Year’ – somebody in the town who deserves recognition for their outstanding actions over the past year or who has had the biggest impact on life in the town.  Below are the nominations. You can vote by simply emailing your choice to news@ frometimes.co.uk or by filling out the form on page 8 of this weeks Frome Times and returning it to the Absolutely Fabulous costume hire shop on Bath Street, Frome. BA11 1DJ  The deadline for voting is 5.00pm on WEDNESDAY 21st JANUARY. 

TABITHA CLAYSON

Tabitha is the co-director of Foreground, helping to produce Frome’s popular independent market, which has been nominated as one of Britain’s favourite, and commissions contemporary visual art projects. She was also heavily involved in Instructions for an Ordinary Utopia.

Tabitha said, “I’m enormously flattered to be nominated and am delighted that Foreground’s work is being recognised as having had an impact in the town. 2014 was incredibly hard work but also our most rewarding and successful year yet, producing our fifth self-initiated visual art project for Frome, Instructions for an Ordinary Utopia, as well as The Frome Independent.

“Instructions for an Ordinary Utopia saw us commission three new temporary artworks for Frome by Simon and Tom Bloor, Peter Liversidge and Ruth Proctor. The artists worked with students from Frome College to conceive of works that tried to make the place we live in that little bit better. It was thrilling to receive such overwhelmingly positive responses, especially Ruth Proctor’s new motto for the town ‘Something Wonderful Will Happen’.

“The market owes its success to the hard work and dedication of our production team, market makers and stewards, the many brilliant traders and businesses, community groups, performers and participants who have all bought into our vision and given their time, expertise and energy so generously. Something wonderful did happen…!”

 

MARTIN DIMERY

Martin has been Frome Festival Creative Director for eight years and in that time has helped keep the event alive as it has gone from strength-to-strength.

The festival, now in its 15th year, is regarded as one of the best small town festivals in the country, much down to Martin and his team’s drive, energy and commitment.

Martin is also programme manager for  Frome’s Cheese & Grain where, for the past ten years, he has played a key role in securing the future of the centre and attracting top entertainment to the town.

He is also well known as ‘John Lennon’ in the Frome-based Beatles tribute act Sgt. Pepper’s Only Dart Board Band which played their final gig at the Cheese and Grain on New Year’s Eve. The group, made up of Frome musicians performed all over the world.

Martin received national recognition in 2014 after being elected onto the executive board of  the British Arts and Science Festivals Association.

Martin said, “I am absolutely shocked and flattered to be put forward for Frome Person of the Year. The truth is that I really enjoy what I do so it is no effort at all.”

 

PETER MACFADYEN

Peter is the current mayor of Frome and throughout 2014 he went beyond his remit to help promote and improve the town.

He has always put the town first, even before he became mayor and previous to that an Independent councillor, and is committed to serving the town.

He founded Sustainable Frome and has helped make the town more environmentally friendly which contributed to the town winning awards and building a reputation in this area.

He views his position as mayor as an extension of his roles within the community as a school governor, charity trustee, director of Frome CIC (which funds projects in the town) and the new Renewable Energy Co-Operative.

Peter said, “I feel honoured to be nominated but really I believe others in Frome are more deserving. I am fortunate to be mayor and as part of that I have a platform where much of my work is made visible – I believe those that are unheralded deserve the award more.  However, I would like to say thank you to those that have nominated me, it means a lot.”

 

JANE NORRIS

Jane is the chair of the Frome branch of the Royal British Legion and has organised the town’s Remembrance parade over recent years.

She coordinated the two-day event to mark the centenary of the outbreak of WW1 in 2014 and was also a key member of the team that relocated the statue of the soldier, Charlie Robbins, to the War Memorial.

She has been a poppy seller for many years and undertakes voluntary welfare work through the RBL and Marston Church, where she is a church warden. She has organised a music festival and soup and pud events, to raise funds and awareness of the rural retreat, as well as helping at services and offering pastoral care.

Jane has followed the family career and enjoys her work as a midwife, as well as a nurse. She supports the Memorial Theatre, and writes reviews for the local press, as well as reports for the Frome Selwood Horticultural Society, of which she has been a member for many years.  She and husband Dan have a large garden to maintain so gain much from the expertise of the society!

Jane said, “2014 was actually the hardest year of my life with my mother passing away.  I had been her carer for years, but it is the caring that we have received that has helped us remember the good times.

“I think it is important that people are kind and considerate, and do their bit for each other and for the town. It is the hugest honour and a great comfort to me that I have been nominated.  I am surrounded by some great people in all the work that I have done.

 

MARTINA O’ CONNOR

Martina is the proprietor of the Westway Cinema in Frome and has fought a long-standing battle to keep the cinema open in the town.

She is also involved in charitable fundraising events with the cinema being used to raise money for the Frome-based charity Positive Action on Cancer. She also joined in the town’s Guinness World record attempt by showing the Wizard of Oz as part of the Frome Festival celebrations.

Her nominator said, “She took on the fight of keeping the cinema open and extending its range of shows beyond film, making it a great asset for community entertainment.”

Martina said, “ I am very humbled to be nominated but I have so much support from the whole community. I love the cinema and am blessed with all the talent we have locally from everyone involved with putting on burlesque shows with Dulcie Demure or Michael Ford for the amazing live music events.”

 

TERRYSTEWART 

Terry works for Frome FM alongside other volunteers, as part of the training team, developing links for youth radio and maintaining the broadcast equipment. He also deals with the Frome Talking Newspaper, as part of the technical team; this service allows people who are visually impaired to access the local news via teams of readers with the news being edited and then downloaded onto memory sticks.

He provides technical help at the Frome Memorial Theatre and is also a Community Governor at Trinity First School where he is on the building and finance sub committee and is also the governor responsible for ICT.

This Christmas Terry helped along with many others at the Frome’s Big Christmas Get Together

He said, “While I am extremely flattered, I personally feel that there must be a lot more worthy people that deserve the award.

“I am very lucky to able to help out in the community doing things that I enjoy.”

 

EMMA WARREN

Emma commits much of her time to serving the town.

She is involved in a variety of community projects, and for the last two years she has led a team of volunteers for Frome’s Big Christmas Get-Together, a free lunch on Christmas Day for those in need of support, or just a bit of company.

More than 200 people attended this year’s event at Frome Football Club, and over 200 volunteers helped to make it all happen, leading up to Christmas, and on Christmas Day itself.

Emma is also the deputy chair of trustees at Fair Frome, a charity set up last year to help local people to bounce back from the difficulties of living with poverty.  They have set up a local Food Bank and led community projects. Last year she joined the Frome Heritage Museum management committee, and helped set up the museum’s social media pages, and this contributed to the museum breaking all records for visitors numbers in 2014.

She has also been involved with activities at St John’s First School, 1st & 7th Beavers group, Openstorytellers, Frome’s Local Job Club and Black Swan Arts.

She said, “I love that Frome embraces new initiatives, and that everyone is so positively involved in our brilliant local community.

“I’m surprised and honoured to be nominated!”

 

HOW TO VOTE

Simply email your vote to news@frometimes.co.uk (please include the name of the person you are voting for and your own name and address) or fill in the voting form on page 8 of this week’s Frome Times.

The deadline is 5.00pm on Wed. 21st January

 

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