Wonderful news and many congratulations to the Butley Ferry team!

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Butley Ferry receives The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service

Butley Ferry, operated by a group of volunteers based in the Suffolk Coast and Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, have been honoured with The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the highest award a voluntary group can receive in the UK.

The volunteers operate what is believed to be the smallest licensed ferry in Europe and carries walkers and cyclists across the Butley River in a boat propelled solely by oars.

Butley Ferry is one of 241 charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the prestigious award this year. The number of nominations remains high year on year, showing that the voluntary sector is thriving and full of innovative ideas to make life better for those around them.

The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service aims to recognise outstanding work by volunteer groups to benefit their local communities. It was created in 2002 to celebrate The Queen’s Golden Jubilee. Recipients are announced each year on 2nd June, the anniversary of The Queen’s Coronation. Award winners this year are wonderfully diverse. They include volunteer groups from across the UK, including an inclusive tennis club in Lincolnshire; a children’s bereavement charity in London; a support group those living with dementia and their carers in North Yorkshire; a volunteer minibus service in Cumbria; a group supporting young people in Belfast; a community radio station in Inverness and a mountain rescue team in Powys.

Representatives of Butley Ferry will receive the award crystal and certificate from Clare, Countess of Euston, Lord-Lieutenant of Suffolk later this summer. Furthermore two volunteers from Butley Ferry will attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace in May 2022 (depending on restrictions at the time), along with other recipients of this year’s Award.

Roy Truman, Head Ferryman, says “To get recognition for our work from such a high level is the icing on the cake. To work in such a peaceful and unique corner of the country is a joy in itself. There has been a ferry at this spot since 1383 and it is a privilege to carry on the tradition of helping our passengers on their journeys. Our volunteers turn out in all weathers to not only do the physically demanding job of rowing the boat but to help to build and maintain the jetties and walkways. This Award has been earned through their hard work and commitment “.

Notes to editors

  1. Lord-Lieutenants represent the monarch in each of the UK’s ceremonial counties
  2. This year there were 241 recipients of The Queen’s Award Voluntary Service from  across the UK and Channel Islands.
  3. More information on the recipients and the Award can be found at https://www.gov.uk/queens-award-for-voluntary-service
  4. Full details on how to nominate are available at https://qavs.culture.gov.uk/.
  5. Nominations for the 2022 awards close on 15 September 2021.