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Falmouth Missions to Seafarers volunteer Penny Phillips rewarded for her work

By WBgdavies  |  Posted: January 11, 2013

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A volunteer described as a "true ambassador" for a charity helping seafarers in Falmouth has been honoured for her services.

Penny Phillips has received the Falmouth Harbour Commissioners(FHC) Annual Award for her work with the Mission to Seafarers.

As chairman, she is responsible for coordinating support for all seafarers at the port, and her work has contributed to the local centre winning several awards last year, including the Merchant Navy Welfare award for services to seafarers.

Penny also played an instrumental role in assisting survivors of the MSC Flaminia when they arrived in Falmouth last summer after their ship went up in flames in the mid-Atlantic, working with a team of volunteers for over eight hours to ensure the seamen were well looked after.

The FHC award is presented to people who have contributed significantly to the success of the harbour over the course of the year, with nominees put forward by a committee of commercial and leisure harbour users, before a winner is selected by the FHC Board.

She received her award from FHC chief executive Mark Sansom, who said: "Penny has done a fantastic job with Mission to Seafarers and has helped hundreds of seamen over the years.

"Penny is a true ambassador not only for Mission to Seafarers but also for the Port of Falmouth, and is a worthy recipient."

As well as holding the voluntary position with Mission to Seafarers, Penny is employed by A&P Falmouth as executive assistant to managing director Peter Child and has extensive experience of all port and shipping matters.

Mrs Phillips said: "I was honoured to receive the award from my home port authority.  Falmouth showed it was a port that really cared about seafarers when the MSC Flaminia's survivors needed support and I was proud that all the Port agencies came together as one to help.

"The Mission to Seafarers was on the dockside to welcome the crew ashore and at 5am in the morning were still at their sides as they left Falmouth for home. 

"I share this award with the emergency support team of The Mission to Seafarers and dedicate it to the late Rev Tom Heffer, general secretary of the Mission to Seafarers who passed away last year at the age of 43".

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