Norfolk town honours true community stalwart

A community stalwart has been recognised for her devotion to Loddon after being presented with The Freedom of Loddon award.

Maureen Larkin, of Princess Anne Terrace in Loddon, received the award after being nominated by residents and business owners from the town.

The 68-year-old was informed she had been chosen to receive this year's award after being sent a letter from Loddon Parish Council.

She said: 'Although I feel that there are many people in this community who are much more deserving of this award than myself, I am happy to think that people regard me worthy enough.'

The award is given annually by the parish council to somebody nominated by members of the community for having done a lot in their community.

Caroline Dwen and Miriam Sargeant work and live in the town and were two of the people who nominated Mrs Larkin.

Mrs Dwen said: 'The Freedom of Loddon award is only presented to those who go out of their way to help the community, and Maureen Larkin is completely deserving of it. She is an amazing, outstanding character who volunteers for charities, at disability clubs and at fundraising events across Norfolk.

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'Furthermore she has entertained us all for 35 years, onstage, on the radio and in pantomimes as part of the Loddon Players. Yet the most remarkable and brilliant thing about her is that she is the same happy, smiley person on the stage and off.

'The village community is honoured to know her and wants to congratulate her on her award – 200 to 300 other people that I've spoken to when I was thinking of nominating her said it was a brilliant idea.'

Mrs Larkin moved to Loddon at the age of four and is married to Michael, 72. They have three children together and two grandchildren. She is also an avid Norwich City FC supporter.

She said: 'I'm chuffed people thought enough of me to choose me for this award. My parents instilled it in me to help people whenever you can. I was brought up like that and must have been inspired by them.

'I've got a brilliant family and I couldn't do everything I do without their support. I just like to thank everyone who saw fit to nominate me. I love them all and I love doing what I do.'

Mrs Larkin has also been an Evening News local correspondent for almost 15 years.

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