Much-loved Exeter Red Coat Guides have received royal recognition with a Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.
The tireless group, whose guided tours are enjoyed by thousands of visitors to the city each year, were today (June 2) announced as recipients of the honour.
It is the highest accolade a voluntary group can receive in the UK.
The Red Coats offer free guided walking tours, giving visitors a perfect way to explore the city and get to know its history.
Councillor Rachel Sutton, lead for climate and culture on Exeter City Council, congratulated the Red Coats and said: “I am delighted with this news. The Red Coat Guides are much-loved and, for many, the welcoming face of Exeter.
“They do a fantastic job in promoting the city and work tirelessly as volunteers, passing on their passion and knowledge of Exeter to everyone who comes to this great city.”
The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service aims to recognise outstanding work by volunteer groups to benefit their local communities. It was created in 2002 to celebrate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee. Winners are announced each year on June 2 – the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation.
The Exeter Red Coat Guides are one of 281 charities, social enterprises and voluntary groups to receive the prestigious award this year. The number of nominations and awards has increased year on year since the awards were introduced in 2002, showing that the voluntary sector is thriving and full of innovative ideas to make life better for those around them.
Award winners this year are wonderfully diverse. They include volunteers helping people overcome mental health problems through sport, volunteers using caravans as mobile cafe/information centres in geographically remote locations and another group mentoring children who have a parent in prison.
Representatives of the Red Coats will receive the award from the Lord Lieutenant of Devon later this summer. They also attended a garden party at Buckingham Palace in May, along with other recipients of this year’s award.
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