A HELENSBURGH woman who volunteered for charity for more than 20 years has been thanked.

Margaret McGowan was named Host of the Year at Contact the Elderly’s inaugural 'thank you' event held at Crieff Hydro.

Contact the Elderly organises free monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties. Volunteer drivers collect guests and accompany them to volunteer hosts’ homes to enjoy baking and a blether.

Margaret hosts for four Contact the Elderly groups – Helensburgh, Cardross, Dumbarton and Glasgow North East – and her pavlova cake has become legendary among guests and volunteers alike.

Margaret said: “It was a nice surprise to receive this award.

“I enjoy making other people happy and the afternoon teas provide these older people with pleasure. It’s really as simple as that.”

More than 150 of the charity’s 1,400-strong network of volunteers attended the event where they enjoyed an awards ceremony, hosted by Morna O’May, head of service, and acting chief executive Cliff Rich, before afternoon tea and harp music.

Morna said: “Margaret is an incredibly welcoming host and provides a superb afternoon tea for our guests and volunteers.

“We are incredibly grateful for her determination and commitment to the charity and our guests.

“Without volunteers like Margaret, we would not be able to make the difference we do for those who live alone in the region and throughout Scotland.”

For more information on Contact the Elderly, becoming a guest or volunteer contact lisa.mctaggart@contact-the-elderly.org.uk or call Suzanne Mackie on 0774385948.