Retired butcher is Newbury Vaccination Centre's Volunteer of the Week
Graham Mabbatt has been nominated as Newbury Vaccination Centre's Volunteer of the Week.
The volunteer leads said: "Graham brings energy and passion to the role and is a credit to the whole operation."
Mr Mabbatt is often to be found organising proceedings inside the hub and one of the leads said: "Lovely Graham – who organises the queue inside and directs to pods so well – he's great and should definitely be volunteer of the week."
Mr Mabbatt, who is retired and lives on the racecourse, has been on the volunteer team since the centre opened and describes his role as "meeter, greeter and seat sanitiser".
He said: "It is one of the most rewarding things I have ever done. People can see the smiles behind our masks and we can see their joy in the anticipation of getting their jabs."
Mr Mabbatt, who ran Graham’s Butchers in Shaw Road, before moving to larger premises in Hambridge Road, said: “Because of my business, I have always been very conscious of hygiene, so I am quite handy with the wipes and sanitiser.”
Although he realises that the centre closing down is a good thing “because people have been vaccinated”, he added: “Oh my goodness I will miss it, it’s difficult to describe how it feels – I always have a bounce in my step going to do my shift.
“And we all appreciate the kindness of local people making us goodies to keep us going.”
However, Mr Mabbatt is also looking forward to getting back to doing things like going out to eat, going to the theatre and seeing friends and family – most especially more of their great granddaughter who was born last November and who they couldn't see for the first few months.
"I'm also looking forward to travelling – we love Ibiza and can't wait to go back there, but I will never forget this experience, it's been fantastic."
It is not the first time Mr Mabbatt has featured in the Newbury Weekly News. In 1989, he baked an extra large cake – well a 3ft high water tank covered in marzipan and icing – for his wife Margaret's 40th birthday, pictured above.