Stourbridge charity says farewell and thanks to retiring board members

Stourbridge News: L-r Geoff Hill and Ron Dalton at The Elton Centre. Buy photo: 511315MH Buy this photo » L-r Geoff Hill and Ron Dalton at The Elton Centre. Buy photo: 511315MH

A STOURBRIDGE based charity for older people has said a big thank you to two long-serving board members who have retired after steering forward the cause for many years.

At Age Concern Stourbridge and Halesowen's memory tree event on Friday December 13, Ron Dalton, chairman, and Geoff Hill were honoured for their hard work which has helped to boost the charity's worth to more than a million-pounds.

Mr Dalton, a retired engineer, first became involved with Age Concern 24 years ago and has devoted the last 20 years to being its chairman; while well-known business boss Mr Hill, owner of Geoff Hill Electrical Superstore in Amblecote, has been a board member for ten years.

Mr Dalton, aged 78, said: "For me personally, coming here brought me a new life."

He said the charity does a "marvellous" job of supporting older people across Stourbridge and Halesowen by running daily lunch clubs, laying on activities galore, offering independent advice on financial and other matters - and just providing company for pensioners who may otherwise be isolated and lonely.

Mr Hill, aged 86, who has raised millions for various charities over the years, said: "I've always enjoyed it and I've tried to help them as much as I can.

"I still probably will help them out with donations and attending some of the events but there comes a point when you can't do everything."

Councillor Ken Turner (Hayley Green and Cradley South), who has taken over as the new chairman, described the pair as "phenomenal" and said he hopes to continue their efforts to ensure the charity goes from strength to strength.

He said: "It was a privilege to be asked to take on the role but it's a daunting task."

Mr Dalton said when he first became involved with the charity "we had £4,000 in the bank and two old bangers - now we're worth over a million; that's down to a team effort over the last 20 years".

Age Concern Stourbridge and Halesowen, which operates 363 days a year - closing only on Christmas Day and Boxing Day, aims to promote wellbeing and good health among older people as well as fighting discrimination and unfair treatment among the elderly.

The charity's memory tree event drew people from across the borough wishing to remember lost loved ones. Among those attending was The Mayor of Dudley, Councillor Alan Finch, and Stourbridge MP Margot James.

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