A VOLUNTEER at The Lightbox in Woking has been recognised at an awards event marking the best within museums, galleries and heritage attractions throughout the UK.

Nick Thomson’s contribution was celebrated at the annual Museum + Heritage Awards, which took place virtually on 22 September and included categories such as Innovation of the Year, Sustainable Project of the Year and Individual Volunteer of the Year.

A spokesman for Woking’s award-winning gallery and museum said: “The Lightbox is very proud to announce that volunteer Nick Thomson, who has donated his time, energy and enthusiasm to The Lightbox for many years, was highly commended as an Individual Volunteer this year.”

Although The Lightbox was unable to host some well-deserved celebratory drinks, Lightbox director Marilyn Scott sent Nick a bottle of bubbly for him to enjoy at home.

Nick, who has been a volunteer for nine years, said: “I don’t know why I won the Highly Commended recognition, it may have been because of the way I interact with people but to be honest, it was a major surprise to me.

“The Lightbox is a fascinating place and what concerns me is that it survives. We need people to come to it as now that we have reopened and take a number of precautions to keep it COVID secure.”

Nick, who has cerebral palsy, also praised The Lightbox for being a disabled friendly building.

“I used to work at the Royal Society of Medicine in the library and later in the finance department and I didn’t understand art, but working here has really opened my eyes.”

As a charitable organisation, The Lightbox relies on volunteers to do a variety of jobs including greeting visitors, leading gallery tours and helping with children’s workshops and activities.

The Lightbox reopened its doors on 11 August and continues to have openings for volunteers. To find out more about becoming a volunteer at The Lightbox, visit thelightbox.org.uk.