Menu

Preston woman who listens to prisoners on Queen’s Birthday Honours list

Posted on - 17th June, 2017 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Charities, News, People
Stella Hayes who spends spare time in HMP Preston helping prisoners
Stella Hayes who spends spare time in HMP Preston helping prisoners

A Preston pensioner who listens to prisoners has been recognised for her volunteering.

Advertisement

She’s spent 27 years hearing the inner-most thoughts of those in HMP Preston and now she’s on the Queen’s Birthday honours list.

Stella Hayes, 71, has been awarded an MBE for her role supporting inmates.

She said: “I got involved at Preston Prison after going to a speech by a psychologist around the times of the Strangeways riots in Manchester in the late 1980s. It was hard at first. We used to walk the wings and give out Samaritans cards, and try and encourage people to speak to us.

“To begin with, prisoners would come up and ask why we were there – they were worried about our safety. Gradually though, things changed and inmates started looking forward to our visits.

“I was totally surprised but absolutely delighted to be given this honour. It’s a wonderful endorsement of Samaritans’ work and the difference we all make together in prisons and across our communities.”

Alison Eddy presents Stella Hayes with her award
Stella was already recognised in the British Citizen Awards

Read more: When Stella was recognised by the British Citizen Awards

Stella was one of the first to do the role in prisons – which has now been rolled out across the UK by the Samaritans.

Director of Samaritans’ Preston branch Eileen Brierley said: “I am thrilled to see Stella recognised in this way for her long-standing commitment to Samaritans. She’s an inspiration to others, sharing her wisdom and making things happen, quietly, but with enormous impact.”

Share
Preston in pictures Miller Arcade, PrestonFishergate Baptist church, PrestonMiller ArcadeAston Garden BridgeCandid on Fishergate PrestonMore Street Art at the Ship Inn PrestonNew Thai restaurant in PrestonCarnival View more Advertisement Subscribe to the newsletter

Sign up below to receive Blog Preston's weekly newsletter. It wings its way into inboxes every Sunday rounding up our best content from the last week and a look ahead to what's happening.

Advertisement News by location

Find news by location, select an area of your choice to be kept up to date with the latest goings on.

Advertisement Categories

Find news by category, select an category of your choice to be kept up to date with the latest goings on.