The four new Freemen of Bury’ Akram Baig, Itzik Alterman, Dorothy Gunther and Trevor Holt (Image: Bury Council)
Four people who epitomize the best of Bury have been awarded the borough’s highest civic honor.
Akram Baig, Itzik Alterman, Trevor Holt and Dorothy Gunther received the Freedom of Bury award at a special ceremony last night, Tuesday, in which they were presented with medallions and scrolls.
Reverend Julian Heaton said the four had “served the borough with imagination, faithfulness and energy” as he led a prayer before the full council meeting.
Mr Akram Baig (Image: Bury Council)
Mr Baig received the honor in recognition of his long and outstanding contribution to community work in Bury for more than 25 years.
He was also praised for his service in tackling inequalities and promoting healthy lifestyles through his work with the Jinnah Day Care Centre, Bury Council for Racial Equality and as a founding member of the Bury Defense Academy.
Mr Baig thanked councillors for the recognition and said he was “extremely honored to receive such an important award”.
Itzik Alterman (Image: Bury Council)
Mr Alterman has also been recognized for his 35-year-plus involvement with the 45 Aid Society and general Holocaust remembrance events.
He was also praised for his “valuable service” over the last five years in helping to ensure, through numerous speaking and educational events, that the Holocaust will never be forgotten.
He said: “Considering I have been through all those atrocities, I’m a happy man.
“Why…because I have always believed, live your life and let others live, that’s my motto
“God bless you all and remember to help others because life is short, I’ll be 95 in May and I still believe you can do good in life.”
Mr Trevor Holt (Image: Bury Council)
Two time borough mayor, Mr Holt, also received the honor.
He represented Bury East for 39 years between 1983 and 2022, serving as major in 1996/97 and 2019/20.
He said: “It has been a privilege and pleasure to serve the Bury East ward and I want to thank them all for remembering my name.”
He also joked that during his life he has often been called the wrong name, with one of the most times being when Cllr Tom Holt was engraved onto the Clarence Park bandstand instead of him.
Mrs. Dorothy Gunther (Image: Bury Council)
Mrs Gunther, who was a councilor for 27 years between 1992 and 2021, received the prestigious accolade too.
Dorothy represented the wards of Ramsbottom and North Manor with “distinction and dedication”, and was major in the 2017/2018 year.
She thanked the Conservative party for “considering and adopting” her even with a “funny accent” and a “German name”.
She said: “This chamber has been the scene of some real battles but at the end of the day, we have always been able to walk up the road together.
“I’ve loved every minute of it, even if people may not have loved me but I want to thank all of you for allowing me to do this.”
Mrs Gunther added that she loved her time representing Ramsbottom and her proudest moments included the campaign preventing the town from being a landfill and setting up Six Town Housing.
The four new Freemen of Bury: Akram Baig, Itzik Alterman, Dorothy Gunther and Trevor Holt. (Image: Bury Council)
The council has also agreed to award the honor to hometown England footballer Kieran Trippier.
This is in recognition of his outstanding performances representing the country and the effect his inspiring sporting achievements have had on the children of Bury.
Tripper, 32, was unavailable to attend Tuesday’s ceremony as he was playing for Newcastle United in their semi final second leg EFL Cup victory against Southampton.
He will be presented with his medallion and scroll at a later date.
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