The runaway success of Arbroath Football Club’s new community trust during lockdown has earned its chairwoman a top accolade.
Shelley Hague has been awarded the John Christison Trophy for her work getting the trust off the ground during the pandemic.
The trust only launched late last year but is already playing a major role in the town.
It runs a free football academy for local kids and is planning more community health and wellbeing initiatives.
Presenting Shelley with the trophy, which is awarded to a “community champion” every year, club chairman Mike Caird said that Shelley had done a remarkable job forming and promoting the club during a difficult time.
Mike said: “This year we decided that Shelley was a very deserving winner.
“The work she had put into making the trust such an amazing success in only six months is well worthy of the award.
“The fact that in such a short time and in such difficult circumstances is testament to the fantastic effort Shelley has put in.
“We are delighted to be able to present her with this award, given out by the club in the name of our longest serving chairman, John Christison.”
Shelley said: “I’m incredibly proud to be awarded this honour.
“We have made brilliant progress in the past six months.
“We now have over 400 local children signed up for our community football academy, giving them the chance to participate in football and football coaching free of charge.
“We are really proud of this achievement in such a short time. We have plans to expand this work and to get more involved in the educational side of things with the children.
“We also plan to address mental health issues and are taking part in a mental health football walk in Dundee next weekend.”
Launched during pandemic
Shelley added: “Already we have been involved in community projects to help out locals during the pandemic.
“Since launching in November 2020 so much has been delivered and that’s thanks to local people and our excellent trustees.”
At the start of the year the trust took part in Souper January, providing meal ingredients to address food poverty.
“This was a great success in supporting local people,” Shelley said.
“In total we provided 180 soup bags from Christmas day to the end of January providing 720 meals.
“We are now exploring partnership opportunities to develop a soup kitchen in Arbroath.
“Our new organisation is already making a difference for local people and Angus as a whole.
“This award is recognition of all the work being done by everyone involved.”