A WOMAN has received an award on the Queen’s birthday honours list after volunteering for more than 45 years.

Patricia Percival has been awarded the British Empire Medal for fundraising and for services to the community of Stanhope.

She has been raising money for various charities and causes since 1975.

Mrs Percival started off fundraising for the cubs and scouts in Weardale, funding their equipment through coffee mornings.

She then volunteered at Stanhope Community Centre when it first opened. It suffered from a lack of equipment, so Mrs Percival fundraised again, got new equipment and also took members on trips to the Sunderland Ice Rink.

She then moved on to another fundraising cause, the Friends of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) after a friend has diagnosed with the condition.

She fundraised to get luxury wheelchairs and televisions for those suffering from MS and continued to raise money running their charity shop until the early 2000s.

Mrs Percival then decided to help the people with diabetes after a family member was diagnosed with it.

She said: “I just fundraised wherever I could, I did a lot of recycling from collecting things from bed sheets to curtains, we recycled it all.

"We used to turn them into all sorts of things, I used to knit things together like hats and scarves and sell them for £1 at the shows in Stanhope and Wolsingham.

“I think my group and I were the first ones to use recycling methods to make most of what we sell.

“My daughter has grown up with it as well, it was like having a little factory in the house, we all used to do raffle tickets and recycle things for the stall.

"I remember being honoured by the MS society with the Shining Star award.

“I’m quite chuffed with British Empire Medal and I don’t think its hit yet but, I continue to fundraise and this year I have chosen to raise money for the Salvation Army.

“I always say that I will stop and 2020 seems a good time to do so, but I prove myself wrong and continue to fundraise, I just get a buzz out of it.

Mrs Percival continues to look out for family and friends, but does not know who nominated her.

She added: “It’s a mystery to me, but I’ll find out in time, someone will let it slip.”