Hartlepool United Disabled Supporters’ Association were celebrating over the weekend after being given the prestigious Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.
Set up in 2001, HUDSA have done incredible work for some of the most vulnerable Pools supporters over the last 17 years and were given well-deserved recognition in the latest round of awards.
As well as providing support to disabled supporters, HUDSA provides short break and respite breaks at holiday caravans as well as holding weekly special needs disco events at Hartlepool Catholic Club.
Neil Appleyard and Darran Hutchinson from the Association were invited to a special garden party at Buckingham Palace last week to celebrate their honour which was officially revealed on Saturday.
“It’s just absolutely and totally amazing,” admitted Appleyard.
“We knew that the award had been applied for but we never thought in a million years that we’d get it so it’s just been a massive shock.
“I think it’s recognition for all the things that are going on in the town in general, not just HUDSA – when I see things for vulnerable people we’re streets ahead of any other town I know.
“It was an amazing experience to walk through Buckingham Palace last Thursday; the gardens are fantastic and there were so many lovely people, it was just wonderful.
“We’ve been going for 17 years now so here’s the next 17!”
Everyone at the Club would like to congratulate Neil, Darran and everyone involved on the award.