Feature: The ‘queen of Elm Park’ is a champion for her community
Ingrid Brandon tells Safira Ali why she is known as the “queen of Elm Park”.
Ingrid Brandon is a champion for her community. No task is too big or daunting for her if it means Elm Park and the people who live there benefit.
For years she has campaigned tirelessly and organised events for her area, And for her efforts she was recognised by the London 2012 committee and selected to carry the Olympic Torch through Herongate in July.
To mark her Olympic efforts, she was selected to light the Christmas tree to mark Elm Park’s illuminations with her Olympic Torch last week.
The Elm Park Regeneration Society said it was a testament to her community work and her efforts to help put together the Elm Park Fiestas and Christmas lights’ switch ons every year.
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Friend and fellow member of the Elm Park Regeneration Group Tina Death said when nominating Ingrid for the Torch Relay: “She works tirelessly for this community and gains nothing. She just works because she believes whole heartedly in Elm Park. She really is the queen of Elm Park.”
When Ingrid used to work in the city she used Elm Park as her base. She said when she started working locally, “I started to value what was on my door step -the shops that sell stuff that you don’t see on the High Street, and shop keepers willing to order items in for you.
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“We started to see some shops close in 2000 and I thought you can sit back and do nothing, or do something about it.”
So she helped set up the Elm Park Regeneration Partnership, an organisation made up of local volunteers and business people and amongst the summer and winter events, the group raises money to regenerate the area.