Spirit shines through

Victoria Hall was full for the Spirit of Ballater Awards
Victoria Hall was full for the Spirit of Ballater Awards

A Deeside community which has battled back from devastating flooding has recognised volunteers who played their part in the recovery.

Tribute was paid at the recent Spirit of Ballater Awards to the “unsung heroes” following the impact of Storm Frank last winter.

And the village was also praised at a packed ceremony in Victoria Hall for volunteering work carried out over the rest of the year.

There were four categories of awards - Individual, Young Volunteer, Community Group, won by Ballater Charitable Cheils, and Voluntary Emergency Services, awarded to Braemar Mountain Rescue.

Aileen Longino, development officer with Aberdeenshire Voluntary Action, said: “It was wonderful to see so many of the community come out to support their unsung heros.

“The ceremony was very poignant and emotional for many but was a celebration with family and friends of what a community can do together. The spirit in Ballater is alive and kicking.”

Local councillor Geva Blackett said: “It was great to see such diversity of folk honoured at the Spirit of Ballater Awards for their work during the floods.

“So many people in and around Ballater pulled together to make sure everyone was dry, safe, had clean clothes and warm food - in many cases when they themselves were flooded out of their houses. It was a wonderful and positive tribute to the community spirit that is so apparent in our rural communities.”