Debbie recognised for service to her community in New year Honours list

Debbie Murdoch has been awarded a British Empire Medal for services to the community in Balmaclellan in the New Year Honours list.

Tuesday, 4th January 2022, 12:06 pm
Debbie Murdoch has been recognised for helping so many people in the village of Balmaclellan during the pandemic

From behind the till of the village shop, the 47-year-old has taken charge of supporting the whole of the Balmaclellan community through the pandemic.

Debbie is also a member of the community council and helper of the village hall committee; acting as a focal point in the village and a conduit through which essential messages can be passed.

During the pandemic Debbie enlisted her wider family, and even the local postman to deliver food and essential supplies to the most vulnerable in the community.

Sign up to our daily The Galloway Gazette Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

She always managed to ensure the shop shelves were full and even opened the shop out of hours so those working irregular shift patterns could get their groceries.

Whilst running her business exposed Debbie to the virus on a daily basis she would not countenance shutting it as so many of the community are completely dependent on the shop.

Her work to support vulnerable members of the community has been an enormous comfort to families who live further afield or abroad and have not been able to travel.

An example of this care and resourcefulness was demonstrated when a neighbour with a disability needed to move and she stepped in to find them a suitable home.

Debbie has continued to support that person as their family lives over 200 miles away and could not always be on hand to help.

She also helped some residents concerned about collecting prescriptions from the neighbouring village surgery by arranging for other residents to collect these on their behalf and have them delivered.

Debbie said: “ Although last year had lots of lows, it definitely ended on a high.

"I woke up on January 1 feeling very honoured and privileged to have been awarded the BEM for services to my community.

"I’m very lucky to live in such a wonderful place surrounded by fantastic people who make going to work a pleasure.

"Thank you so much for nominating me, it is such a great honour.”