Peter awarded for dedication to town ‘oasis’

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A Boston man has been honoured for more than a decade-and-a-half’s work to improve and maintain an area of open space in town.

Peter DesForges, 77, has become the second winner of the Robert Lauberts Environmental and Community Award in recognition of his work at Boston’s Witham Way Country Park.

Witham Way Country Park, Boston.

Witham Way Country Park, Boston.

It was presented to him by Mr Lauberts’ widow, Rachel, at the finish of the Boston in Bloom judging tour at Fydell House last Tuesday.

The cup is awarded in memory of Mr Lauberts, a tireless supporter of Boston in Bloom who strove to make Boston a better place to live through a raft of volunteering efforts.

He died in 2015 following a short battle with cancer.

Presenting the honour, Rachel recalled how Peter had founded the Friends of Witham Country Park (of which he is chairman) in 2001 as a response to unusable, weed-infested park benches.

She said he has devoted the past 16 years to the park, helping to improve it for everyone through such measures as making it accessible for all and by creating new habitats to attract insects, butterflies, birds, and small mammals.

In 2012, it would go on to become designated a Local Nature Reserve.

“The park now attracts hundreds of visitors and users each week and has become an oasis for both residents and visitors alike,” she said.

Peter said he was ‘overwhelmed’ to be presented with the cup,

He said: “I was very surprised and very privileged to receive the award.”

He paid tribute, however, to the role played by the Friends of Witham Country Park committee, volunteers, and sponsors D and M Barthorpe Electrical Contractors, F. E. Addlesee and Son, and Marshlands Veterinary Centre.