A GROUP of volunteers in Malmesbury have been honoured with a Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.

Friends of Riverside, a group of volunteers who run the Riverside Community Centre in Malmesbury and associated projects, will be recognised with the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.

The award is considered by many to be ‘the MBE for volunteer groups’.

Kim Power, chairman of Friends of Riverside, said: “We are thrilled and honoured to have been awarded the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in recognition of our work for our community.

“We feel this is also a tribute to those people who use Riverside and get involved, either as a volunteers, hirers or participants.

“We would also like to say a special thank you to Wiltshire Council for including Malmesbury in their Campus Project and refurbishing the Riverside building.”

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 June 2 – the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation and are published in the London Gazette.

In the nomination, the Friends of Riverside is said to ‘provide an affordable community centre, with activities to enhance the wellbeing and health of local people’.

Trustees Kim Power, Peter Gilchriest, Catherine Doody, Margaret Perrin, new trustee Mary O’Briend and retired trustee Ellen Blacker will receive the award from Sarah Rose Troughton, Lord Lieutenant of Wiltshire later this summer.

Winners get a certificate signed by the Queen and a domed glass crystal.

Representatives from the group may also be invited to attend a royal garden party.

A record number of 281 voluntary groups have been awarded this year.