Pair deserving of honourable role

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NEW JPS: Judy Skevington (left) and Dellwyn Moylan with Judge Jo Hambleton following their swearing in as JPs at the Ashburton District Court.
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Friends Judy Skevington and Dellwyn Moylan have been sworn in with the Ashburton Justices of the Peace Association.

The pair, both with a long standing passion for the community, were sworn in by Judge Jo Hambleton in the Ashburton District Court last week.

Skevington has been embedded in her rural community and worked in the commercial and public sector, while Moylan has been working for many years building partnerships and engagement between different community organisations.

Judge Hambleton said it was her pleasure to welcome the pair who both had an impressive list of credentials, life experience and personal attributes, which confirmed they were suitable and ideal for the role.

“Ms Skevington and Ms Moylan, you have both been appointed by the Governor General to join the ranks of other dedicated, hardworking and community-minded people to serve as a Justice of the Peace,’’ Hambleton said.

“The role of Justice of the Peace is an ancient and honorable one dating back some 700 years to the time of England’s keepers of the peace, so today in taking your oath of allegiance and judicial oath you affirm and honour an ancient tradition,” she said.

JPs today, just like those hundreds of years ago, undertake a series of valuable roles in the community including judicial duties which can be significant and onerous, she said.

Outside the court duties could include witnessing a document, taking a declaration or swear an affidavit or affirm affirmations.

“Without wishing to embarrass either of you, you don’t strike me as the kind of women who probably get told how marvellous you are very often,” Judge Hambleton said.

She noted both women had served the community in organisations that “step up in times of crisis when our people need help most, through St John, Civil Defence and Red Cross”.

“I was struck by the wealth of experience you have at providing support, assistance, knowledge to others. You have demonstrated commitment and integrity, as you have shown insight, patience and preparedness to go to the community around you.

“It’s no small thing to spend a lifetime doing that, so thank you,” she said.

Ashburton JP Association president Max Cawte, with Judge Jo Hambleton (front) and new JPs Judy Skevington and Dellwyn Moylan.

Ashburton JP Association president Max Cawte said Skevington and Moylan were both successful in their careers and at serving the community.

“You are both very worthy of becoming JPs, it will be a pleasure to have you with us.”

Skevington has always had rural Canterbury at heart. She lives on an arable farm which she runs in partnership with her son.

She was born in Geraldine, started school in Lismore, moved to Springburn and attended Methven District High School.

After finishing school she worked at National Insurance and then PGG Trust Department.

Skevington loves crafts and is a collector and maker of teddy bears and their friends. She also enjoys volunteering, which started with junior Red Cross at primary school.

When her children were young, she helped out at school and joined the local Asthma Society.

She also joined Red Cross in Flemington and the Inner Wheel club of Ashburton.

She volunteered at community police stations, Neighbourhood Support, Restorative Justice, Victim Support and Safecare.

In later years she joined Civil Defence, Rural Support, Anglican Advocacy and Can Inspire.

Moylan has had a long standing connection with the community through her many work and volunteering roles.

She described volunteering as part of her family’s DNA. She said she was following in the footsteps of her parents, the late Des and Ruby Moylan who also volunteered.

She is the Mid Canterbury manager of Volunteering Mid & South Canterbury and a reporter with The Ashburton Courier. She is also a marriage and funeral celebrant.

Much of her working life has been, and continues to be, in the area of social services and community support.

She has worked with, and for, a wide number of community agencies and events, with people from diverse backgrounds and in different situations.

It has included working at the Ashburton Information Centre, Caring for Carers and a local church.

She has been volunteering for more than 40 years and is still a volunteer with the Ashburton District Council Civil Defence, Hakatere Marae Komiti and St John as a caring caller.

She most recently volunteered at community events and projects including Poppy Flight, and care packages for Operation Protect.