Action for Botton Chairman Neil Davidson voted Community Champion 2015
2 November 2015
Retired solicitor Neil Davidson, who lives in Glaisdale, has been voted 2015 Community Champion by the readers of Coastal View and Moor News magazine and website. Neil was nominated for his work as chair of Action for Botton, an action group established last year to ensure both the preservation of shared living at the Botton village community for the learning disabled and the continued involvement of the volunteer Co-workers in the life of the village.
2015 is the fourth year of these important regional awards with people being urged to nominate “their community champion, a person who you feel deserves to be acknowledged and thanked for the work they do”. Neil was the runaway winner of the award attracting more than 300 nominations from all over the UK and from as far away as Australia and New Zealand.
A spokesperson for Action for Botton said: “Many supporters feel that Neil’s pivotal role in the campaign has enabled the Co-worker flag to be kept flying at Botton through some very challenging times. Leading the campaign has been virtually a full-time job and this recognition is well-deserved.”
One of the real benefits of the crisis at Botton has been the coming together of Botton Village and the local community. We recall, for example, the amazing meetings at Danby Village Hall when nearly 300 locals came to show their support. On 24 October, at a ceremony in Brotton, Neil was presented with the prestigious Community Champion Award by local press. He was totally surprised having been persuaded to attend this event on the pretext of supporting a friend. Neil explained that he was well tricked but once the shock wore off he realised the significance and told the audience:
"We have learnt some real lessons during the current struggle: the future of Botton will be embedded in the wider community and that will be an important support and strength. This award symbolises that relationship and is something all our friends and supporters have earned. The future we have learnt must be gained by talk and more talk. We have always known that and hope that CVT have now come to realise this as well. We have seen the love and concern that so many local people have for this place at the far end of a Dale yet at the centre of the local community. My thanks go to all who have supported Botton and voted for me."