Sisters rewarded for charity work

Two north Norfolk sisters who set up a charity providing housing for needy local families have taken a trip to Buckingham Palace, to be presented with MBEs by the Queen for services to their community.

Two north Norfolk sisters who set up a charity providing housing for needy local families have taken a trip to Buckingham Palace, to be presented with MBEs by the Queen for services to their community.

Fifteen years ago, Gill and April Wilson set up the Stable Door Housing Trust, buying the charity's first house for £25,000 in 1994.

A further 6 followed, with local groups and individuals helping by organising sponsored events, fetes and sales, and an annual carol services held at St Peter's Church raising up to £1,000 a year.

A former Wren, Gill worked as a teacher in London and Leicester before returning to Sheringham to set up the Hilbre School for children with behavioural problems.


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She and April, a retired speech therapist, have been involved in a number of charities, including Mencap, the Autistic Society and the north Norfolk branch of Amnesty International.

They also set up a local Good Neighbours group helping elderly and disabled people with hospital transport and personal care.

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The sisters, who earlier this year were forced to turn down an invitation to the Queen's garden party after a much-loved tenant died from cancer, were delighted to finally get to meet Her Majesty.

Stable Door chairman Clive Hedges, who accompanied the pair to Buckingham Palace said Gill and April, who are both now in their eighties, were great ambassadors for Sheringham.

My proudest moment was to see Gill and April approach the Queen together and then spend much longer than anyone else talking to her - and that included Des O'Connor," he added.

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