Amazing North Devon people of all ages will be taking their place in a new Lockdown Legends exhibition in honour of their efforts during the coronavirus pandemic.
The exhibition at the Royal Albert Memorial Museum and Art Gallery in Exeter follows a competition appealing for nominations for those who have made a difference.
They include five-year-old Jack Hopkins from Northam, who walked 50 kilometres with several 5k walks during lockdown to raise £1,550 for NHS Together charities.
Mum Katie Roberts, who nominated him, said: “Jack is over the moon he was chosen for a Lockdown legend and is looking forward to going to the exhibition. He’s proud that he has been able to contribute towards helping fight the virus.”
Dale Hall of cultural network The Ashford Society was nominated by Dr Ian Lewin, for his work rallying the society’s Helping Hands network to help the most vulnerable in their community.
Mr Hall said he was merely the co-ordinator: “In the small village of Ashford, we have well over 20 volunteers who have helped with shopping, prescriptions and all kinds of support for residents during lockdown; there’s a tremendous sense of community and it’s been a pleasure to co-ordinate the activities.”
The resources of South Molton’s Aramis Rugby were enlisted by 10-year-old Ryan Mahajan, who was nominated by mum Roshni for his idea of using the family business to create rainbow rugby shirts and balls to raise money for hospital charity Over and Above and North Devon Hospice.
The company has absorbed the entire cost so every penny from those sold goes to the charities. Ryan said: “I felt bad that while we are safe inside our homes in lockdown, the healthcare workers were working to save lives, sometimes risking their own.”
Parents Vikas and Roshni Mahajan said: “As parents we are really proud that at such tender age, Ryan appreciates and understands the importance of doing work for the community. We were blown away by his imaginative way to encourage people to show their support to the Healthcare workers. It was an honour to have the Prime Minister supporting him and now that he has also been acknowledged as a Lockdown Legend, it has spurred him into thinking of new ways to contribute to the society further.”
Bideford DJ Andy Pearson, nominated by Candace Jewell, used his spare time to entertain others by hosting his free Positive Vibes Roadshow live on his Facebook page during the height of lockdown, raising more than £600 for NHS Together charities.
Each week he had up to 100 people in his audience. He said: “I was thrilled to bits when I heard I had been chosen to be a lockdown legend.
“It was just something I was doing and people seemed to like it and it carried on week after week.”
Sarah Rebecca Hague nominated mum Maria Vincent for her work making and selling masks for North Devon Hospice and Over and Above. All money went to the charities.
Due to high demand two friends offered to help out and they raised more than £1,000.
Bideford community stalwart Rita Witney was nominated by Denise Morrish for her unselfish dedicated.
The 73-year-old shopped weekly for herself and four other elderly people, as well as delivering newspapers to her neighbours.
Mrs Witney also cooked daily for several vulnerable people, as well as calling elderly neighbours who were on their own.
And she donated a laptop to the local school so that a child would be able to do their school work.
The exhibition at the museum opens on September 28. To find out more and see more Lockdown Legends, visit https://rammuseum.org.uk/meet-your-lockdown-legends .