A HELENSBURGH community volunteer who has spearheaded the delivery of essential supplies to her vulnerable neighbours during the pandemic was the most popular Lockdown Heroes nomination this week.

Liz Simpson, the chair of the Kirkmichael Community Development Group, was nominated by three different Advertiser readers for her tireless efforts on behalf of those most in need in the area.

Reader Mary Murray phoned us shortly after last week’s paper went on sale to say: “Liz runs the lunch club for pensioners in Kirkmichael, and now she’s running about every day with heavy bags of shopping for people in the community who can’t get out.

“Liz has had a whole life of going out of her way to help others, and no-one has ever put her forward for an award.

“You couldn’t meet a nicer woman.”

READ MORE: Nominate your Helensburgh and Lomond 'lockdown heroes' for a special mention in the Advertiser

Another nomination for Liz came from Jeanette Shortt, who said: “Liz has been looking out for her pensioners every week since lockdown.

“She’s run a ‘meet and eat’ pensioners’ club every Wednesday for a few years now – they meet up and she makes them cakes, sandwiches, scones and tea or coffee.

“Every week since lockdown she has gone over and beyond to make sure each person that goes to the ‘meet and eat’ gets a wee parcel of food delivered every week.”

And Clare Newport added: “Liz has not stopped collecting food donations, cooking, baking and delivering to her local pensioners who would usually go to the ‘meet and eat’ she cooks for in Kirkmichael.”

Other nominations received over the past seven days included these...

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Martin Rippon from The Ginger Bread Man, who was nominated by Romy Fagan and Susan Gardner.

Romy said: “This guy goes above and beyond in all that he does. Not only has he been keeping our community stocked with flour, eggs, cakes, bread and all other yummy treats but behind the scenes he has been contributing to the wider community.

“Martin weekly donates fresh bread and cakes for people who have come to need the help of the local food bank.

"He also makes sure our local NHS workers and fire service are supplied with cake treats to give them a wee boost during these times.”

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READ MORE: Thank you for keeping us safe - our simple message to Helensburgh's health and care heroes

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Irina Agostinelli was nominated by Helensburgh Community Council, Patricia Low and Ludka Aitken.

Patricia said: “Irina has been organising a group of about 90 ladies to make scrubs for care homes, the Golden Jubilee Hospital, the Vale of Leven Hospital, and the GPs in the area.

“She has been purchasing the fabric, cutting it out and organising deliveries so that myself and nearly 90 ladies can make up these very needed scrubs.

"She has worked continuously and deserves a mention and praise.”

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Donald Martin, manager of the Anchor Inn in Garelochhead, was nominated by Kath Polley, who said: “Anyone that needs items, whether it be hair dye, milk, eggs, or speciality products, Donald has put himself out to go to the shops and deliver to the vulnerable or less able.

“He continues with his infectious laugh and happy personality.”

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READ MORE: How a Helensburgh family is building a lockdown go-kart from an old bath and motorsport debris

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The staff at Rhu Primary School were nominated by the Roberts family for their efforts in keeping children engaged and involved during lockdown.

Mum Rachel said: “It is easy to think that teachers are having an easy time working from home, no marking, or lesson preps.

“But this is very far from the truth – many of them have their own children at home, yet are always there for us parents if we need help or just a chat.

“They are missing all the children very much and it hasn’t been easy adapting to this new way of learning, but they have all surpassed themselves, and for that I am truly grateful.”

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Sarah Gethins and Alison Thomson, both community care workers for Quality Care Scotland, were nominated by Sarah’s husband, and Alison’s son-in-law, Pete Gethins, who said: “Both have not missed a day’s work during the pandemic as they realise how vital their job is to care for the clients.

“Both have worked overtime and gone above and beyond to ensure the service to their elderly clients has continued without disruption.”

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READ MORE: Extra £900,000 from government to help Argyll and Bute social care sector in coronavirus fight

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The staff at Kilcreggan Medical Centre were singled out by reader Julia Barr, who said: “They have really helped me when coordinating efforts round the peninsula to help the elderly and vulnerable during the current crisis.

“I have no phone signal at work, so haven’t been able to do much for those not on Facebook, but the medical centre took on a database of local volunteers that I passed on and have been a real driving force in ensuring those not on social media have had all their needs met.”

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Dr Wendy Hamilton of Grasshopper Toys was nominated by Anita Coogan and her son Thomas, who is on the ‘high risk’ list and is shielding at home.

The doors of Wendy’s shop have been closed since lockdown restrictions were introduced in March, but on hearing Thomas had run out of paint for the models he makes at home, Wendy got in touch and delivered replacements to Anita’s door.

Anita said: “We have been in the house since the first week of March. I can’t thank Wendy enough for this great service – Thomas is so happy he can do his hobby in lockdown.”

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READ MORE: Hermitage Academy draws up plans for virtual school concert during lockdown

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There were also mentions via our Facebook page for the following key workers and business owners:

Staff at Lochside Care Home (nominated by Anne McBride);

The girls and guys at Premier Healthcare (nominated by Charlotte Gibson);

NHS mental health nurse Anita McGrath (nominated by her daughter, Sophie-May McGrath);

Asda worker Diana Baird (nominated by her daughter Alisha Baird);

Linsey Craig and David Urquhart from the Helensburgh Zero Waste Shop (nominated by James Steel).

READ MORE: Have your say on Scotland's response to coronavirus crisis as MSPs seek public's views

Tariq Durrani from Helensburgh Garelochside Rotary, our partners in the Lockdown Heroes initiative, said: “We’re delighted at the response from the Helensburgh community to the invitation to nominate ‘Lockdown Heroes’.

“We look forward to delivering testimonials of appreciation to these praiseworthy candidates.

“It is heartening to note the diversity of nominations and the wide spectrum of services being offered to the weak and vulnerable in the community.

“We’re certain that there are many more deserving of recognition for their selfless work. We encourage readers to continue with their nominations in the coming weeks.”

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READ MORE: 'Say thanks to shop workers' says Helensburgh's MSP as survey reveals spike in abuse of retail staff

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If you know of someone in Helensburgh and Lomond who isn't mentioned here, but who has gone above and beyond to help you, or the community, during the coronavirus lockdown, we want to know about them.

Tell us, in no more than a couple of sentences, who who you think deserves a mention in our Lockdown Heroes roll of honour and why.

Please remember to include your contact details and those of the person you’re nominating – and a picture of your nominee if you can!

Email your nominations to editorial@helensburghadvertiser.co.uk or send a message via our Facebook page.