Teen wins first Young Townsperson award

NAWN 1301087AM4 Award winner seventeen years old Danny Laycock with Wetherby High School student director David Frame. (1301087AM4)
NAWN 1301087AM4 Award winner seventeen years old Danny Laycock with Wetherby High School student director David Frame. (1301087AM4)
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A teenager who devotes his spare time to caring for the elderly has won the very first Wetherby Young Townsperson of the Year award.

High School pupil Danny Laycock beat off tough competition to lift the title given for his work at Ashfield Nursing Home and with other elderly residents in the area.

Mayor Alan Lamb, who came up with the idea for the award scheme in a bid to promote young people in the town, said: “It was a really, really difficult decision to make.

“We had eight young people nominated and any one of them would have been worthy winners.

“The reason we chose Danny was because he was bridging the generation gap.

“Others had sporting achievements and raised money but it was just the fact that he gave up his own time not for any reward but just to help elderly people.

“He is quite an inspiration and he is genuinely making a difference to elderly people.”

Danny, of Ennerdale Close, told the Wetherby News that he felt very proud to be given the title, set up to mark the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

He said: “When I went to collect the award I saw my name was up in the town hall in gold letters.

“I have done quite a bit of work with the elderly in the community so it was nice to be acknowledged.”

Among his voluntary work, Danny visits a 97-year-old man once a week.

He added: “I just spend time with him once a week.

“He gives me something back because he is quite interesting to chat to as he has travelled all over the world and tells me about the places he has visited.”

Danny added that his voluntary work, including kitchen duties at Ashfield Nursing home, may have to be stepped down as he prepares for his A-Level exams in politics, business and history this year.

The 17-year-old was nominated by student director of Wetherby High School sixth form David Frame.

“I was aware of Danny’s work with Ashfield Nursing Home and the elderly man he has been visiting over the past 18 months,” said Mr Frame.

“He has also been involved in charity fund-raising for Children in Need and the Christmas community party we stage for the elderly at the school.”