At a ceremony in the beautiful surroundings of Combermere Abbey on Monday Afternoon, 4th October, the Wheelyboat Services Trustees and Volunteers were presented with the prestigious Queen's Award for Voluntary Service by the Lord-Lieutenant of the County of Cheshire Lady Redmond MBE.
The overwater Wheelyboat ( known as the Maughan Lass) and Wheelybus Service is based at Overwater Marina and its President is the owner of the Marina, Janet Maughan.
The Wheelyboat Service and subsequently the Wheelybus service followed the success of the Audlem Lass which provided canal trips between the overwater Marina and Audlem. Since its inception the Audlem Lass has carried more than 4000 passengers raising money for the RNLI.
However, it became apparent to Rodney Cottrell BEM, who was the inspiration behind all of this, that only fully able people were being catered for and so he together with Mike Harthern went in search of a boat capable of taking people in wheelchairs. They eventually found such a boat available from the Wheelyboat Trust.
Then came the mammoth task of raising the funds to purchase such a boat and more recently a Wheelybus to transport carers and infirm people to the boat.
What a tremendous success it has been and the volunteers are very deserving of this Award.
Sadly Rodney Cottrell passed away earlier this year and so was not able to be there with everyone but Christine, his wife was and received her Award on the day.
For more details go to the Wheelyboat Services website here and the file below the photos will provide more background details.
Click on the photos to enlarge