A new award created as a memorial to the founder of a local horse riding group for disabled people has been presented by members.
Albert Rutledge received the Pat Bishop Volunteer of the Year honour at a surprise ceremony organised by members of the RDA Mount Group at their Somerby Equestrian Centre base.
Albert was recognised for his outstanding commitment and support to the group, which he has been involved in almost from the beginning since it was founded by Mrs Bishop more than 30 years ago.
She died tragically in a fire at her Melton home two years ago and the group wanted to create an award in her memory.
County RDA chair Jane Corrall presented the award in front of over 50 volunteers and riders from across Leicestershire.
She said: “Albert is the embodiment of everything an RDA volunteer represents.
“His selfless commitment to the group over many years has helped hundreds of differently abled riders achieve their goals and Pat Bishop would be delighted his contribution has been recognised with this award in her name.”
In response to beeing given the honour, Albert said: “I am totally shocked.
“There are so many fabulous volunteers in the RDA and I am very honoured to have been nominated.”
In addition to a presentation shield, flowers and a magnificent cake from Baines Bakery in Uppingham, Albert received an afternoon tea for two at Launde Abbey which he intends to enjoy with his wife Milly.