Brighter Whitehead has been presented with the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service at a special celebration event in the seaside town.
This is the highest award given to volunteer organisations across the UK and the Lord-Lieutenant for County Antrim, Mrs Joan Christie CVO OBE, presented the award at The Bank House.
Members of Brighter Whitehead, which was established in 1995, attended and during speeches tribute was paid to past and present colleagues.
The aims of the group from the start were to contribute towards enhancing the town through environmental improvements, in association with other community groups, businesses and statutory organisations.
Whitehead is renowned for its floral displays that are enjoyed by its residents and visitors, and play a role in bringing people and investment to the town.
In its polytunnel, Brighter Whitehead grows the majority of the flowers that are displayed around the area in planters and hanging baskets.
Whitehead has entered Ulster in Bloom each year since 1995 and has represented Northern Ireland in Britain in Bloom a dozen times.
The group also promotes issues such as cleanliness, sustainability and community involvement.
Congratulations, praise, and thanks for all the hard work, have been pouring in to Brighter Whitehead, following the royal recognition.
Among those who extended best wishes was the Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Cllr Maureen Morrow, who said: “I am delighted to write to congratulate Brighter Whitehead on being awarded the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.
“This award is a great tribute to the voluntary work of the Brighter Whitehead members.”
The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service is now in its 17th year and has seen over 500 nominations across UK, with just over 280 groups receiving the honour, including a total of 22 from Northern Ireland.