Bill Dodds is like the man from Del Monte, he likes to say ‘yes’, and that’s why he is the latest resident to win our good neighbour of the year award.
Which is fitting because the former salesman for the well-known food and production company has just won a housing association’s good neighbour of the year award.
Bill was the overwhelming choice of the judges in the Durham Aged Mineworkers’ Homes Association (DAMHA) 2018 Good Neighbour of the Year competition.
The 70-year-old who lives in one of DAMHA’s Aged Miners’ Homes in Burnopfield, County Durham, was nominated by three of the neighbours he helps on a regular basis.
Kelvin McHugh said: “Bill is always there to help and give advice and if you need to go anywhere, he is more than happy to take you in his car.”
Eddie Boyd said: “He is very helpful in difficult situations: I don’t know what we would do without him.”
Susan Brown, whose mother Elizabeth Greathead lives next door to Bill, said: “Bill is always on hand not only to my mother but to all who live in the street.
“Each resident has Bill’s landline and mobile number to call in case of need and every Saturday Bill brings my mother a very tasty bacon sandwich.”
A modest Bill, who has received a trophy, plaque and cheque for £150, said: “I didn’t expect anything, but I am chuffed to bits about winning the competition.
“I lived here for a few years and have always tried to help my neighbours, many of whom are elderly or have mobility problems.
“If bringing a bacon sandwich to someone or taking someone else out in the car makes a difference to them, then that’s good enough for me.
“I used to work in sales for Del Monte in the North East, so I guess saying yes to people is in my blood!”
Paul Mullis. DAMHA Chief Executive, said: “It’s always difficult picking a winner, especially in a year with so many nominations, but Bill stood out for his selfless work helping his neighbours and we would like to congratulate him on his well-deserved award.”
Second prize, and receiving a plaque and £100 was Carol Sowerby, from Spennymoor, and third prize, and receiving a plaque and £50, went to Gordon and Teresa Orr, from Sunderland.