Making a difference matters to Judith...

Judith Poole.
Judith Poole.

JUDITH Poole spent a few hours the other day lying in the rain alongside the River Calder at Brearley pretending to be unconscious and with a broken leg.

It’s typical of Judith’s approach to serving her community that, as soon as she heard that Calder Valley Search and Rescue was looking for volunteers, she immediately signed up.

Judith Poole and Jennifer Redfearn

Judith Poole and Jennifer Redfearn

Judith, the new president of Brighouse Rotary club, said: “It sounds uncomfortable but it was actually a lot of fun.

“A speaker from Calder Valley Search and Rescue came to one of the Rotary club meetings recently and said they were short of volunteers to take part in exercises.

“It didn’t take me long to decide to put myself forward - it’s just a different way of offering support and help to a local organisation.”

A member of the Brighouse club since 2004, Judith follows in Jennifer Redfearn’s footsteps to become the second female president.

Rotary Day to raise the profile, aid recruitment and raise funds for Polio: (from the left) Keith Davison, judith Poole, Bill Crow, Jenny Redfearn, Phil Poole, Stephen Guy, Tim Dale and John Ottaway

Rotary Day to raise the profile, aid recruitment and raise funds for Polio: (from the left) Keith Davison, judith Poole, Bill Crow, Jenny Redfearn, Phil Poole, Stephen Guy, Tim Dale and John Ottaway

Judith and her husband Phil have given many years of service to Brighouse organisations and the wider community. Phil is former chairman of Brighouse Gala and Judith is a magistrate on the Calderdale bench and past chairman of the Approved Premises Association which help prisoners on licence.

She is also on the management committee of a women’s hostel in Leeds and is closely involved with Brighouse Inner Wheel.

“Brighouse Rotary Club has a reputation for friendliness and it has a very loyal membership.

“The pleasure I get from being a member is in the friends I have made and in the service we give to the Brighouse community and overseas.”

Judith’s particular interest lies in helping the Royal British Legion in Brighouse with its annual Remembrance Day commemoration and poppy collection.

“It is a cause close to my heart. Many British Legion members are ageing and the membership is dwindling. I feel that it is so important that the act of remembrance continues.”

Judith, now 63, was born in Todmorden and lives in Copley Lane, Halifax. Recently Judith and Phil held a race day for charity at their home and on Thursday she took part in the prize-giving at William Henry Smith School at Rastrick.

Earlier this year she was steward on the route of the Rotary Navigation Walk which raised more than £4,000 for local hospices and she often has responsibility for driving Brighouse Gala Queen and her attendants along the route of the procession.

“In Brighouse Rotary we feel we are a small cog in a very big wheel but we are proud of what we achieve and, at an international level, the organisation has made great strides in the eradication of polio.

“It’s not only Rotary members who have raised the money for the polio vaccination programme but it’s also Rotary volunteers who have actually carried out the immunisation programmes in India and parts of Africa.”
 Brighouse Rotary Club meets on Monday evening at the Auctioneer restaurant and new members are welcome.

“We have a lot of fun and make new friends but, like many organisations, we do need new members,” said Judith. “I think the more you put into an organisation like Rotary, the more you get out of it.”