Lockdown heroes who served up more than 40,000 meals to housebound pensioners in Highland Perthshire have been honoured at a national awards ceremony.
The Feldy Roo initiative was set up by Elgin City boss Gavin Price at his Fountain Bar restaurant in Aberfeldy.
The Fountain partnered up with other local restaurants and cafes to make and deliver free hot meals to over 70s across a 25-mile radius, seven days a week.
Now campaign organisers have been crowned the UK’s Pub Heroes at the Great British Pub Awards.
Staff and regulars at the Fountain Bar erupted in cheers when their pub’s name was announced during a virtual ceremony hosted by broadcaster Stephen Mulhern.
The awards, sponsored by Greene King and Coca Cola, are held each year, but this time judges changed their focus to celebrate how publicans’ selfless acts of kindness helped vulnerable members of their communities.
The Fountain beat competition from six other establishments from around the UK.
Gavin said: “It’s a tremendous honour, but its really an award for the whole community who came together during this difficult time. More than 140 people volunteered to help, it was really incredible.
“We were only too happy to offer our help. Accolades like this are great, but its the difference we were able to make to people living in the area that really matters. That’s our real reward.”
He said a prize of £10,000 will be put back into the area. “We will look at three ideas for how this money can be spent locally and discuss them with the wider community,” he said.
Volunteer Julia Dunbar said: “We were operational within 48 hours of the idea being generated.
“Gavin and I went out on the first night and delivered 10 meals, and by the second night we had doubled our numbers.
“It grew and grew and peaked at 241 and we maintained that for the full three months.”
As well as dishing up thousands of meals, Feldy Roo generated money with a online justgiving.com campaign. Within the first day, they made their target of £2,000. To date, they have made just over £137,000.
Local politicians congratulated the Feldy Roo team on their win. SNP MP John Swinney said: “I cannot think of a more fitting recipient of this award.
“The efforts of Feldy Roo over this past few months have been a real bright spot during what has been a dark time for us all.”
Local councillor Mike Williamson added: “Everyone who was involved should be proud of this recognition of their achievement.”
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