A THORNBURY charity set up after the founder’s husband died of a brain tumour has been given the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.

Brain Tumour Support, founded by Tina Mitchell Skinner 16 years ago, has been given the highest award handed out to local volunteer groups in the UK.

The Queen’s Award is considered the MBE for volunteer groups and was created in 2002 to celebrate the anniversary of the Queen’s coronation. Brain Tumour Support, which provides support for patients, families and carers facing the effects of a brain tumour diagnosis, is one of 281 groups to receive the prestigious award this year.

Two of the organisation’s longest serving volunteers John Stuart and Kieran Widdowson attended a Royal Garden Party in May.

Later this summer the charity will receive the award officially from the Queen’s representative, the Lord Lieutenant of Gloucestershire Edward Gillespie.

Tina Mitchell Skinner said: “We couldn’t do what we do without our amazing team of volunteers. They give up their time and skills so generously and with such commitment to help out in the office, at support groups and at fundraising events.

“We always knew they were outstanding, but this is external recognition at the highest level.

“It really does indicate the huge contribution they make to enable us to support brain tumour patients and their families.”

Sue Swift is one of the charity’s many volunteers. She said: “I started volunteering for Brain Tumour Support after the charity supported me and my family following my meningioma diagnosis. After several operations I am now partially sighted. Volunteering is uplifting and keeps me positive.

"I love raising awareness and sharing all the lessons I have learned on my brain tumour journey. I hope it makes a difference to others with brain tumours.”