Longfield community queen Sandra is Birthday Honours MBE
PUBLISHED: 07:00 08 June 2019
A community stalwart from Longfield has been made an MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours for her tireless work over 50 years.
Sandra Scotting's tasks have been many and varied over the decades, but she says it really has been down to a team effort.
In 1989 she fought to save Steephill School, Castle Hill, Hartley, from closing down and spent months completing all of the legal requirements to have the school set up as a not-for-profit charitable trust.
She was also involved in fundraising and setting up publicity campaigns to keep the school running for the children's future.
From there, she also became the school's trust secretary ensuring that she complies with the Charity Commission, sending reports and annual audits. And she been involved in the Ancient Order of Foresters Charity for which she had organised a quiz night which raised more than £500 towards the Kent Air Ambulance charity.
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But it all started long before then. After the Bethnal Green train disaster in 1943, Sandra wanted to create a memorial to the 173 people that died. Her commitment soon came to encompass the far wider loss across the entire Bethnal Green community.
And in 2006, Sandra decided to construct a memorial for the victims. Her vision drew her into 10 years of exhausting voluntary work to gain planning applications, policies, insurance etc. which also included support letters from former London mayor Boris Johnson
She helped support the survivors and relatives to come to terms with their dreadful experience by organising gatherings and events. It received newspaper coverage and an interview with BBC TV and radio. The opening ceremony was held in 2017 which was attended by the MP for Bethnal Green and Mayor of London.
Since 1968, she has acted as a secretary of the Foresters Friendly Society in the Walthamstow East London Branch. She created regular newsletters for elderly and disabled members who couldn't attend social meetings.
Sandra said: "I am very humbled to get this award. It really wasn't just me, this has all been a team effort from lots of people over all those years.
"I still don't know who put me forward for this, but I am truly amazed."