Queen’s award for volunteer drivers

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A charity which drives cancer patients to hospital appointments was presented with its Queens Award for Voluntary Services.

The drivers and volunteers of the Primrose Car Service were handed the official certificate and crystal trophy by Lord Lieutenant of Bedfordshire Helen Nellis.

During the ceremony, held on Tuesday, Mrs Nellis read the award citation from The Queen and confirmed it is the highest award open to voluntary services, carrying the same prestige as an individual MBE.

Service spokesman Brian Hanling said: “Mrs Nellis congratulated the drivers and spoke of the great benefits they provide for the patients.

“She highlighted how voluntary service is the glue which holds the community together.”

He added co-ordinator Delphi Ellis, the drivers and The East of England Ambulance Service were also thanked by Bedford Hospital Charities chairman Jayne Beard and the chairman of NSH Trust Bedford Fiona Wilson.

Every week the volunteer drivers take patients at Bedford Hospital’s Primrose Cancer Care Unit to Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, for radiotherapy treatment.

The service, believed to be the only one of its kind, began in 2006.

It is free for patients and is funded by The Bedford Hospitals Charity and donations.