'Absolutely over the moon' – Award for Buckie shop owner's baby bank efforts
Easier access to your trusted, local news. Subscribe to a digital package and support local news publishing.
A BUCKIE shop owner has been honoured for helping young families weather the cost of living crisis.
Ashleigh Hepburn Mair, who runs TooCute childrenswear, was named Fundraiser of the Year at the 2023 Moray and Banffshire Heroes Awards.
She received the honour, sponsored by Northern Asbestos, at an awards ceremony at Brodie Countryfare on Thursday, April 20.
Her fundraising journey began after she came face-to-face with how the cost-of-living crisis was hitting local families.
This experience inspired her to create a baby hub at her shop, so families could get the pre-loved baby essentials they urgently need.
Speaking after she received her award, she said it was a great moment and praised the other nominees.
"I am delighted, totally delighted. Just over the moon," she said.
"Honestly, I didn't expect to win at all.
"I kind of wish I'd prepared something to say, but either way I am absolutely over the moon. So honoured and so delighted.
"There were so many good nominees up there today and to be there amongst all of them makes me feel brilliant."
Ashleigh's baby bank continues to distribute a range of clothing and other essentials, including prams and high chairs from her High Street base.
She said he had been overwhelmed by the public's support for her work, and their passion in handing in donations and spreading the word.
A nomination for Ashleigh, submitted ahead of the awards, read: “Despite being busy bringing up her children and running a busy shop, she spends many hours everyday fundraising and pleading for donations for her baby hub.
“Every year she raises thousands of pounds for Moray charities; she does raffles, bingo, money squares and holds a Ladies’ Day.
"Ashleigh deserves to be nominated for her tireless fundraising.”
Upon taking the stage to accept her trophy from host Nicky Marr, Ashleigh told the crowd how grateful she was.
"Thank you very much," she said.
"I kind of thought, in my head, that I would know what to say.
"But being stood up here I haven't got a clue.
"When I learned I was nominated for this award I was delighted, but I am even more delighted now I have won it.
"So thank you very much to everybody who voted, well done to everybody, and good luck."