An incredibly dedicated resident has been rewarded for his service to the Radlett community.
Graham Taylor, who has helped the Radlett Rotary Club, the Radlett Society and the Green Belt Association by chairing countless committee hearings and AGMs, won a Hertsmere Civic Award for his contributions.
The Hertsmere Civic Awards, held by Hertsmere Borough Council on March 23, highlighted the unsung heroes of the Hertsmere community.
Graham said: “Although I knew that I had already been nominated, it was still a proud and humble moment, as the only Radlett nominee, to hop up to the stage and receive the crystal glass award and certificate from the Mayor, Brenda Batten.
“Thinking back, I didn’t realise quite just how many different voluntary activities in which I’ve got involved – sometimes it’s hard to say ‘no’. But the common thread is trying to do something of benefit to Radlett, sometimes with the minimum of resources.”
Graham, who moved to Radlett in the early 80’s, cited his time as field manager at the Radlett Festival as an example. One of his first contributions to Radlett was being a volunteer electrician at Newberries School, where his three sons were all pupils.
He continued: “Later, while a parent governor, I carried out an investigation into the County Council’s home-to-school transport service to see if the proposed cuts in funding – affecting Radlett – were justified. I mapped every comparable settlement in Hertfordshire that had a school bus service – all done without the benefit of Google!
“Having helped run a campaign to protect a local green belt site, the Radlett Society & Green Belt Association (RSGBA) co-opted me and within 18 months asked me to become its chairman. And as, by this time, I had been promoted from site manager to chairman of 1st Radlett Scout Group executive, I thought RSGBA might be my big chance!
“Running this show with the help of some really knowledgeable people, I felt very privileged, and it brought many new friends and contacts.”
Graham soon became a planning/green belt representative, which led to him being an Aldenham Parish Council Planning Committee adviser, helping with the Radlett Neighbourhood Plan.
Soon after, he began helping with plans to open the Radlett Museum. When Radlett’s renowned historian, Philip Eastburn, died suddenly in 2015, Graham was there to pick up the pieces of his priceless research.
He said: “I hope my planning application will be granted, because the embryonic museum needs a permanent home, where the public may visit and appreciate the vast collections of maps, books and pictures left by Philip and other items generously donated by local residents and their families. There’s a massive amount of work to do to establish the Museum, index its accessions, interior design, displays and publicity, and to anyone who wants me as a volunteer I would say, ‘just try not to ask this year!”
Picture courtesy of Blake Ezra Photography