A COMPETITION to find a real-life fairy godmother has recognised a woman who dedicates much of her time to helping others.

Organised by the Georgian Theatre Royal in Richmond and the Darlington & Stockton Times, and run in conjunction with the theatre's panto Cinderella, the public were asked to nominate people for a Fairy Godmother Award.

Sheila Pedley, who has lived in the town all her life, topped the poll because of the time she dedicates to others - taking elderly folk shopping, visiting the sick and housebound and taking people to hospital appointments.

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She has also been involved with Sunday evening hymn singing at the Friary Hospital for more than 60 – an activity originally started by her father.

Daphne Clarke, who made the nomination, said: “Sheila is always willing to go the extra mile if anyone is in need and she does everything with a warm heart and a happy smile."

As part of the prize, Mrs Pedley was given complimentary tickets to Cinderella and attended a VIP reception with cast and crew.

Theatre manager Warnock Kerr said: “Her kindness and good deeds have obviously touched the lives of many people in our community and she works tirelessly all year round."