Community group will uphold legacy of Phyllis Baxter

Phyllis Baxter receives the Citizen of the Year award

Phyllis Baxter receives the Citizen of the Year award - Credit: Archant

A group has been set up to celebrate and promote Ottery St Mary - inspired by one of the town's greatest champions.

The Friends of Phyllis Baxter Working Group are drawn from across the community and are united by a desire to ensure Phyllis's legacy is never forgotten.

A group spokesman said: "For many years Phyllis Baxter dedicated every minute of her life to the promotion of the town, not only as an individual but as manager of the Ottery St Mary Tourist Information Office.

"After she passed away in 2018 it was felt that all the work she undertook was not resting on an individual or an organisation anymore. Probably those new to the town never had the opportunity to realise how much it was involved in the work that she did.

"Nevertheless, those who were her friends and supporters remembered it and felt her legacy should have been preserved. We as Friends of Phyllis Baxter’s Working Group believe that at present times, when the effects of the pandemic and the lockdown are felt through the town, specially by our local traders, the formation of this group of friends ready to continue Phyllis’s job, would be welcomed by everyone."

The group said: "This is a non-party politics group formed mainly by town residents neither trading in a specific field which gives us the freedom to act without any personal interest or benefit, united by the memory of the 'best ambassador this town ever had' and the wish to preserve the work Phyllis did for many years of her life."
Among the many things the group aims to achieve are:
1 - Stimulate Public Interest in the town by promoting it as a town of great quality and character.
2 - Promote the town, events and businesses -without distinction - of the service offered via the press, social media, radio and TV.
3 - Organise a plan of activities in collaboration with well established events that will attract people to the town, not once a year but throughout the year.
4 - To promote or assist in promoting activities of a charitable nature throughout the area of benefit.
5 - Create a welcome pack of information for new residents in collaboration with Estate Agencies in town and the information office
6 - Support local initiatives by visiting and welcoming new businesses in town and provide them with the necessary information that will help them promote their business and work in harmony with other traders
7 - Organise, following the tradition of previous years, the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Ball in June 2022
8 - Secure the preservation, protection, development and improvement of features of historic, environmental or public interest in this area by maintaining a record of those things considered as eyesores in town and write to the responsible authority in order to get it solved or fixed.
9 - Produce a range of publications designed to celebrate the heritage of the town and the surrounding countryside.
10 - To give advice and information through the OSM Information Centre
11 - To hold meetings, lectures and exhibitions aimed at supporting our traders and promoting Ottery.
12 - To do all such other things as are necessary for the attainment of the said purposes of the formation of this group.
If you would like more information regarding this group or are interested in joining us, please either get in touch with Josefina Gori at gorjn@gmail.com /07941 459441 or Ann Anning 07761970768. Alternatively look at the group's Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/Ottery-St-Mary-Friends-of-Phyllis-Baxter-103429238635420/?ref=page_internal

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