THE dedication of faithful members at a church family in the Hillfoots was recently recognised with long service awards.

Many volunteers within the congregation at Alva Parish Church, who work hard to make life a little better for those around them, were celebrated at the start of this month.

From helping out with informal activities like serving teas and coffees after the service, through organising flowers or being a friend in time of need, to more formal leadership roles, the people recognised with certificates all do their part for what is a second family for many.

The elders eligible included Joyce Bell, Martin Dunsmore, Alison Fyfe, Isobel Green, Thomas (Gil) Harvie, Andrew Muirhead, Krystyna Pollock, Alexander Pollock, Margaret Simpson and John Willis who have all been helping out for 30 years.

For 40 years of service, certificates went to Kenneth Field, George Forsyth and Ivan Williams, while Alex Reyner and Alistair McKellar were celebrated for their 50 years of involvement.

Alexander Pollock, who was celebrated for his 30 years of service alongside his wife Krystyna, told the Advertiser: "We were pleased to receive the awards, it was humbling.

"It's not just us, we are part of an excellent team of elders in the church, everybody works really well together and with the minister's guidance.

"We are pleased to work for the church, because our little church in Alva has a very-very friendly congregation and I would say it's almost a second family to us.

"It's often called the church family by others as well, it's a really nice environment to be in."

And there was special thanks given to Margaret Simpson, daughter of former minister Mr Simpson, who has clocked up a mighty half century of unbroken service as organist and choir leader, earning a beautiful cake as a celebration of her tireless work and dedication.

Alexander added: "Margaret Simpson is a very faithful church member, she has been the church organist for over 50 years now."