Jean still volunteers at 80!
Five years ago, Jean Lund would not have believed that the start of her 80th birthday celebrations would be outdoors on a Merseyside nature reserve. As well as a major milestone in her life, Jean was celebrating being part of the passionate and committed Merseyside volunteer team at Freshfield Dune Heath, for The Lancashire Wildlife Trust, over those years.
Proudly wearing her five-year volunteer badge, Jean admitted she had not previously been involved in anything similar in the past. A former teacher, Jean had worked with husband Bob, owning a number of shops in Liverpool. They spent happy years in retirement before Bob passed away. Then Jean was walking through Freshfield Dune Heath and met the volunteers clearing gorse. After chatting with the gang, she began to turn up regularly. She also volunteers at Mersehead, on the coast.
Jean said: “I do some heavy work but not as much as I could if I was younger, but I have helped to ‘count’ the conservation grazing cows and taken part in some wildlife recording. “In fact I am now the group’s fungi expert and I pass on records to the Wildlife Trust. I am not really an expert because it is such a varied subject but I have learned a lot in the last five years. I volunteer because I live nearby and I enjoy seeing the wildlife when we are outdoors. I have also made a lot of friends in the group.”
Those friends got together for a buffet and party in the polytunnel at Freshfield Dune Heath. Jean will be celebrating her birthday with her family – two children and two grandchildren at home, in Formby, on Monday 24th October.
The Lancashire Wildlife Trust Merseyside Reserves Officer Fiona Whitfield said: “Jean is an amazing, enthusiastic lady. She has also added many species to our fungi records. Sometimes I forget she is 80, when I am asking her to chase sheep across a meadow!”
The Merseyside group won The Lancashire Wildlife Trust’s Volunteer Group of the Year for 2016.
Photo, back from left: Andy Leeder, Sian Parry, Peter and Julie Olsen, Rob Jenkins, Charlie Fletcher, Barry Smith, Fiona Whitfield. Front: Mary Duncan, Maureen Rimmer, Sue Beddows, Jean Lund and Lynn Hogg.