A LOCAL community group were presented with the King’s Award for Voluntary Service at a ceremony at Barnsley Town Hall this week.

The Friends of Wilthorpe Park were formed in September 2015 by a small but enthusiastic group of volunteers.

Nine years on and the group is still thriving, with many of its founding members still present.

On Wednesday, the Lord-Lieutenant Dame Hilary Chapman present the group with their crystal trophy that will stay on display at the town hall.

Lee Swift, a volunteer at the group, said: “Through their efforts with gardening and fundraising, the group have enabled significant improvements, including a new play area, bike park, planting of fruit trees and more.

“Many who helped the Friends of Wilthorpe Park grow and thrive, or who supported their many projects, were invited along to witness the ceremony. The volunteers were beyond thrilled to receive the award, which is the equivalent of an MBE for the park itself, and is the highest award possible in the UK for volunteers.”