Everybody needs good neighbours

I was saddened to read a recent survey carried out by a building society which revealed almost three quarters (73%) of people in Great Britain don’t know their neighbours’ names and half don’t feel part of a ‘neighbourly community’.

Everybody needs good neighbours

Apparently the reasons for this are that people are less inclined to ‘put upon people’ or they don’t want to become to friendly for fear their neighbours will ‘drop in’ all the time.

What nonsense!

Now I appreciate times have changed and we can no longer leave our doors unlocked and it’s less likely you will talk to your neighbour over the garden fence these day etc, but we should still know their name. If you are asking my neighbours are called Jackie and Craig.

I am therefore glad to report that neighbourliness still does exist in some quarters.

Last week, Railway Housing Association held its annual residents’ conference and as part of this we announce the winner of our good neighbour of the year award.

This is presented to the resident who goes the extra mile to help others and the best thing is that nominations and votes come from our own residents.

I never cease to be amazed by the lengths people go to be a good neighbour and this year’s winner is no exception. He is 64-year-old Rick Yardley, who lives in our Great Western Court sheltered housing scheme in Hereford.

Rick had a friend called Hiram who fought a long battle with cancer and rather than die in a hospice he wanted to be in his own home.

So, Rick looked after his daily needs, doing his shopping and being the liaison between the medical and Macmillan nursing staff. This enabled Hiram to fulfil his wish of spending his last few months with his friends in his own home.

If that wasn’t reason enough to win our good neighbour award, during the bad weather earlier this year many of the residents were unable to leave their homes, so Rick took it upon himself to do the shopping for everyone and at one point carried back 22 pints of milk for his neighbours.

Oh, and as a former gardener, he helps ensure the gardens look nice and even sought out a special brand of breakfast cereal that a fellow resident had been unable to source.

So, thank the stars for people like Rick who would appear to be bucking the trend.

Everyone at Great Western Court, and now thanks to his blog a few more people, now definitely know his name!