Chichester’s finest recognised at Civic & Heritage Awards

Mayor of Chichester John Hughes with his wife Cheery (centre), alongside actress Patricia Routledge (right) and the rest of the night's winners
Mayor of Chichester John Hughes with his wife Cheery (centre), alongside actress Patricia Routledge (right) and the rest of the night's winners

ACTRESS Patricia Routledge CBE was among those awarded at the annual Chichester City Council Civic and Heritage Awards.

A packed audience gathered in The Assembly Room of the Council House, North Street on Monday night for the presentation ceremony which saw three individuals win civic awards and four buildings named heritage award winners.

The mayor of Chichester John Hughes said: “Awards are given by the city council for the buildings with the most heritage and for maintaining standards so our children have something in the future.

“The civic award is for the wonderful people who have done great things for the city of Chichester and this is one way of paying them back.”

Felpham resident Graham Matthews was the first person to be handed a civic award for his tireless work on behalf of the local poppy appeal.

Rob Campling gave a citation, said that Mr Matthews had been involved with the Royal British Legion since leaving the navy in 1979.

He has held a number of roles in the Bognor branch, including secretary and branch president and with the help of others, increased its size by 100 per cent, and in recent years has also been a collector in Chichester.

Mr Campling said: “Graham has been a poppy collector for more than 30 years and he has run three London Marathons for the poppy appeal.

“He has raised tens of thousands of pounds for ex-servicemen and their families so I’m very glad he is being recognised tonight.”

Mr Matthews thanked his wife, as well as his fellow volunteers in the Felpham, Bognor and Chichester branch of the RBL, and said the current poppy appeal had already raised over £49,000.

Anne Scicluna then read out the citation for the next winner Ms Routledge, the actress best known of playing Hyacinth Bucket in the television series Keeping Up Appearances as well as being a regular at the Chichester Festival Theatre. Having first performed at the CFT in 1969, Ms Routledge moved to the city in 1998 and has been involved in a huge amount of local charities including Friends of St Richard’s Hospital, St Wilfrid’s Hospice, Homestart and the local food banks.

Dawn White was the final person to be handed a civic award and cllr Clare Apel explained that after moving down to Bishop Luffa Close from Hartlepool, Ms White set up an active residents’ association.

Working closely with students from Chichester College, Ms White played a lead role on creating Sunshine Corner, a children’s play park which 
opened last year.

“Dawn is an absolute diamond who thoroughly deserves this award,” Mrs Apel said.

A ‘visionary’ architect scooped two of the heritage awards.

David Sandell was the designer behind two major restoration projects which were among four winners.

31 West Street had been a derelict Georgian building before being totally restored using original Georgian materials where possible.

Mr Sandell was also the architect behind the transformation of The Mill, 5 East Row.

The old grain and seed store had become ‘something of an eyesore’, according to Barbara Garrett, before being beautifully made into two dwellings.

Accepting the award, the owner of 31 West Street hailed Mr Sandell as a ‘visionary builder’.

Also recognised with a heritage award was the Chichester Festival Theatre and the Visitor Centre, Canal Wharf.