Councillors made a unanimous decision to bestow a special honour on a member of the Tadcaster community.
Gillian Hainsworth was presented with the Council’s Merit Award Certificate for her “considerable and selfless contribution to fundraising for those affected by the devastating flooding in 2015” after being nominated.
In March this year, after helping with the clean-up operation following the floods, Mrs Hainsworth, the Leader of the renowned Tadcaster Grammar School Big Band, organised a fundraising concert at the Riley-Smith Hall.
The sell-out concert, which raised £3,100, had the backing of HRH The Duke of York and was attended by the Deputy Lieutenant of North Yorkshire David A Kerfoot, MP Nigel Adams and other Civic dignitaries.
Through contact with HRH The Duke of York, via his Personal Secretary, Gillian was put in touch with costume jeweller Adrian Buckley of Buckley London, who sent 2,000 Yorkshire Rose pins to help with the fundraising campaign.
Mrs Hainsworth distributed them to various outlets and spent many weekends selling them at local events and galas.
A further 1,000 pins were donated by Mr Buckley and so far the staggering sum of nearly £13,000 has been raised from the sale of these pins.
“It was a tremendous honour to be unanimously nominated by members of Tadcaster Town Council for this award,” said Mrs Hainsworth.
“Tadcaster has suffered and has suffered badly.
“There are numerous residents and businesses who have still not recovered from the Boxing Day floods and to be able to help and support so many of these people has been a truly humbling experience.
“It has been an immense privilege to support them, and the community, in this way.”
Mrs Hainsworth praised the generosity of Adrian Buckley saying: “I would like to pay special tribute to Buckley London, who so generously donated the Yorkshire Rose pins and made this magnificent fundraising opportunity possible.”
To date the money raised from the sale of the Yorkshire Rose pins, combined with the proceeds of the Big Band Concert now totals more than £16,000.
The Mayor of Tadcaster Don Mackay, who presented the Council’s Merit Award Certificate, said: “I am absolutely astounded by the amount of money raised by Gillian Hainsworth, which will be put to very good use.
“I cannot thank her enough for what she has done for the community following the flooding and would like to take this opportunity to send all best wishes for her future endeavours.”