St Albans charity reflexologist shortlisted for national award

Left to right: Hilary Walker and Sandy Winyard

Left to right: Hilary Walker and Sandy Winyard - Credit: Archant

An “outstanding” care worker from St Albans has been shortlisted for a national award.

Hilary Walker, from Chiswell Green, is up for the Volunteer of the Year in the Towergate Care Awards for her work as a charity reflexologist.

She has helped patients at The Hospice of St Francis once a week for more than seven years, often going above and beyond by giving stressed family members a reflexology session as well.

Hilary said: “To have the privilege to work with patients and their families at a very vulnerable time in their lives and to see the pleasure they experience from a simple and gentle treatment is a real highlight for me.

“The hospice plays such an important role in the local community.”

Denise Van Outen will host the ceremony awards event at The Dorchester hotel on March 23, when winners of all the different categories will be announced.

Sandy Winyard, the Hospice’s Complementary Therapy Coordinator, said: “Hilary is a real credit to her profession as a reflexologist.

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“She is the most reliable, aware and graceful therapist I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with.”

Sandy described her as practical, supportive, sensitive, empathetic, discreet and logical.

Kirsty Wainwright-Noble, from Towergate, said: “Towergate has longstanding relationships with many care organisations across the country, so we know the vital role carers play and have witnessed the high level of commitment and dedication from people working in this industry.

“We were astounded by the number of entries we received and it wasn’t easy to narrow down the nominations as they were all incredibly deserving in their own right.”

Two other people are in the running against Hilary in her category - David Fordy and Pamela Humphry.

Denise Van Outen said some of the entries were “phenomenal”.

She said: “The event will be a wonderful opportunity to celebrate those who deserve recognition for their outstanding contribution to the care industry.”