Our very own gardening expert volunteer’s achievements are celebrated at the Newmarket Rotary Community Awards.

We are so proud of and thrilled to announce that one of our volunteers received the Runner Up Award, in the Environmental Award category, last Friday evening at the Newmarket Rotary Community Awards ceremony held at the Jockey Club. These awards are a celebration of the outstanding individuals who make a difference in our community.

Jean was nominated because of her dual roles, looking after the museum collections and also the green spaces around the museum site. She always goes above and beyond coordinating a team of gardening volunteers, who work tirelessly in all weathers. Visitors to the museum will have noticed that they have been dealing with the immense task of removing box hedges, following the unstoppable infestation of box tree caterpillars in Newmarket, whilst also keeping on top of all the other gardening jobs.

In her Collections Volunteer role, Jean has completed complex repetitive documentation tasks, archival projects and collection audits.

As part of the wider collections team, Jean has helped install and de-install exhibitions, cleaned objects and has assisted in making collections and archive material more accessible to visiting researchers.

Jean assisted our Creative Programme Manager with the 130 Years of the Astley Centre exhibition, which was on display in the museum earlier this year, celebrating the work of the Racing Centre and the history of stable staff sports. The Environmental Award nomination focused on Jean’s work with our Creative Programme Manager, helping to develop an exciting programme of learning around biodiversity and climate change, sowing seeds with over 200 school children as part of the nationwide programme of learning, the Wild Escape in 2023 and the Wild Escape Reimagined in 2024. A legacy of this project is the improved biodiversity of our site through the creation of the museum’s wildflower path next to the Paddocks, as well as providing inspiration and awareness for the next generation.

Sarah Coleman, our Creative Programme Manager who made the nomination said: “Jean always sees the best in any given situation, is always positive and is so lovely. She truly deserves recognition for her amazing work for the museum, not just in the past couple of years that I have known her, but since becoming involved with the museum in 2015.”

Environmental Award

Awarded to a person, or group of people, who help to make our local community more environmentally friendly.

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