Torrington Cavaliers has won the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, it has been announced today (Thursday).

The major national award is given to volunteer groups in the UK for community service.

Torrington Cavaliers was established in 1970 and have staged many events raising hundreds-of-thousands of pounds for charity.

The group is famed for its giant bonfires and last year completed an 18-month build of Trumpton which it burned to the ground.

Cavaliers chairman, Steve Young, said: “The Cavaliers are honoured to receive this prestigious award. It recognises all the hard work done by the group since we were formed in 1970.

“It’s estimated that we’ve raised and given away nearly half a million pounds in that time, helping thousands of local and national charities and good causes.

“The founder members and all who have been involved since would be and are proud to be honoured in this way.

“The motto established by the founders of the group was ‘To provide entertainment the like of which Torrington has never seen before’, we will continue to do this and support the town in any way we can.

“We thank those who proposed us for this award, the local community who have supported us and the election committee who have recognised our efforts over the past 46 years.”

The award was first announced by The Queen in celebration of her Golden Jubilee in 2002.

The first awards were made in 2003 and it is the highest award that can be made to any voluntary group, equivalent to an MBE.

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