Pair who love helping others receive county's highest honour on Suffolk Day
- Credit: JEREMY MAUGER
Two very special people who have dedicated their lives to helping others across the county will today receive Suffolk's highest honour.
Linda Hoggarth and Jeremy Mauger, who have "selflessly delivered a lasting and positive impact on the lives of people in the county", will be presented with Suffolk Medals at the start of Suffolk Day.
Linda, from Mid-Suffolk, has spent a lifetime of work improving the lives of people with disabilities, while Jeremy, consultant anaesthetist at West Suffolk Hospital, has given many thousands of hours in voluntary work with the Suffolk Accident Rescue Service (SARS), where he is their longest serving current responder.
They will be the fifth and sixth recipients of the award, designed by artist Maggi Hambling.
Chair of the judging panel, HM Lord Lieutenant of Suffolk, Clare, Countess of Euston, said: “Both our Suffolk Medal recipients for 2021 have selflessly delivered a lasting and positive impact on the lives of people in our county.
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“Linda’s persistent, compassionate and determined approach has won her the respect and admiration of all those who work with her. Her leadership and contribution to so many groups, projects and initiatives clearly illustrate her lifelong commitment to being a force for lasting change in the lives of disabled people and their families.
"Jeremy very clearly cares so deeply about others. Over and above the vital role that he plays daily within our local NHS in West Suffolk, his incredible drive, generous spirit and dedication to volunteering for SARS helps patients in their direst hours of need.
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"He thinks nothing of getting up from his bed in the middle of the night to help treat someone who might be in extreme pain, who might be critically injured in a vehicle on a rural road, who might be in cardiac arrest, who might otherwise not survive.”
Jeremy Mauger has been a volunteer with SARS for 20 years and volunteers hundreds of hours for the emergency responders each year.
He said: “I am astonished and humbled by this honour. Volunteering with Suffolk Accident Rescue Services (SARS) is a privilege and I feel that this award recognises all the teams with whom I work, particularly given recent pandemic challenges.”
Linda Hogarth, MBE, has played a key role in the creation and management of numerous voluntary organisations and has also informed and influenced the delivery of social, health and housing services in Suffolk.
She was a founder member, and then chair of Mid Suffolk Rethink, later known as Rethink Disability and then Optua. As a role model and champion, she has inspired, encouraged and supported many other ‘user led’ organisations across Suffolk.
She said: "I am very pleased and surprised to be honoured for my commitment to disabled people and disability organisations in Suffolk. This honour reflects and pays tribute to all those I have worked with over many years."
The Suffolk Medal was the idea of George Vestey, from Haverhill, when he was High Sheriff of Suffolk in 2018-18.
The first three medals were presented to Terry Hunt (past editor of the East Anglian Daily Times), Canon Sally Fogden (founder of the Rural Coffee Caravan) and Walsham le Willows philanthropist, Richard Martineau. The fourth medal was awarded in lockdown to Grenville Clarke, charity environmentalist, who has since sadly passed away.
The award is funded by private individual contributions to the High Sheriff Fund, managed by Suffolk Community Foundation.
Mr Vestey said: “Four years after the first meeting to discuss the idea of Suffolk Medal it is wonderful to see two more very worthy recipients.
“Any resident of Suffolk can nominate someone to be considered at the annual meeting of the judging panel, which I am honoured to be a member of.”
Suffolk residents are encouraged to submit a nomination for The Suffolk Medal - for details, please visit the Suffolk Medal website.