'Honour from The Queen is for the people of Leighton Buzzard', insists Geoff
Retired bookmaker says he's so proud of the community after receiving British Empire Medal
Retired bookmaker Geoff Dimmock has received the British Empire Medal awarded by the Queen, telling Her Majesty’s ambassador: “This one’s for Leighton Buzzard ”
A life-long member of the Leighton Buzzard community who has raised over £75,000 for local and national charities helping the young, the elderly, the sick and the needy, Geoff was presented with the medal by HM Lord-Lieutenant of Bedfordshire, Helen Nellis at a special ceremony at Luton Hoo.
Awarded the BEM in the Queen’s New Year honours list for services to the community of Leighton Buzzard, Geoff, accompanied by wife Pam and sons Stephen and Paul, told the Lord-Lieutenant: “The people to thank for this award are the residents of Leighton Buzzard. Their generosity and support has been used to help the young and the elderly with serious health issues, and I am very proud of the community in which I live.”
Geoff, 79, raised the money for worthy causes with an annual golf-charity day and other activities at Leighton’s Plantation Road golf club where he has been a member for 30 years.
Boosted by contributions from friends, playing colleagues and local businesses, Geoff donated every penny to MENCAP, CLIC Sargent which helps children with cancer and leukaemia, the Leighton Otters swimming club, cancer patient care and research, Alzheimer’s and heart and liver charities as well as hospitals and other organisations which help sick and elderly people.
Supporting him at every event was wife Pam who he met at infant school in Linslade and married 57 years ago.
Having left school at the age of 15, Geoff had several jobs before becoming a Unigate milkman. He later became a turf accountant, managing his own business for 30 years before retiring in 2003.
While sport has played a major role in Geoff’s life, his passion for golf was ignited over 30 years ago, since which time he has won numerous competitions despite using only four clubs for his regular rounds on the Plantation Road course.
Says Geoff, who organises a group of golfers affectionately known as the ‘Plum Duffs’ raising money at weekly events and the annual charity day: “I never thought for a minute that our charitable efforts would be recognised in this way. It came right out of the blue; I feel humbled and honoured and look forward to carrying on for a few more years yet.”