A VOLUNTEER charity worker has received the royal seal of approval in recognition of her dedication to the cause.

Pat McClelland will be among the guests at the Queen’s annual garden party next week, in the grounds of Buckingham Palace.

She was invited in tribute to her “inspiring” commitment to Sue Ryder.

The 75-year-old, from Keighley, is lead volunteer at the charity’s shop in the Airedale Shopping Centre, Keighley, where she has worked since it opened six years ago.

Pat also spends a couple of days a week at the Skipton shop.

The nomination for her to attend Wednesday’s garden party was made by Sue Ryder regional manager Glynn Taylor and commercial director, David Borrett.

They cited her “unfailing hard work and loyalty” to the team of volunteers at the shop.

Tribute is also paid by Heather Ayrton, the store’s assistant manager.

“It is a privilege to work with a lady so incredibly passionate,” she said.

“She gives so much of her time and energy to the charity and all for free.

“Without Pat, we would not have the very successful Sue Ryder shop we have today.

“We are very lucky to have her and she fully deserved this honour.”

Since Pat joined Sue Ryder, she has also raised £1,000 for the charity’s Manorlands hospice at Oxenhope through various personal projects.

And she helped advise on a new electronic till system which is now used nationally.

She has picked-up several accolades in acknowledgement of her support, including a special recognition honour at the Sue Ryder Incredible Colleagues Awards in 2017.

Pat said she was “surprised but honoured” to be invited to the garden party, which she will attend with her daughter Jayne.

“I was one of just four people from Sue Ryder nominated and the only volunteer from any of the 460 shops,” said Pat.

“It was a big surprise but I feel very honoured.

“I love my work and am part of a great team.”

Airedale Shopping Centre manager, Steve Seymour, says Pat sets an “outstanding” example.

He added: “She has been an inspiration not only to Sue Ryder but to everyone here at the centre.

“Her determination to drive the success of the charity’s shop has been an incredible feat.

“Not only are her volunteering credentials exceptional, but she is a superb, kind-hearted lady who thoroughly deserved this amazing recognition from the Queen.”

Each year the Queen welcomes more than 30,000 guests for an afternoon in the gardens of Buckingham Palace.

People are chosen for the positive impact they’ve made in their own communities.