A BURY community group has been saved from the brink of collapse thanks to the actions of one spirited resident.

Don Mills, aged 87, of Toon Crescent, has helped to relaunch The People's Voice, a community group which supports the residents of Brandlesholme.

Established 18 years ago the group has enjoyed years of success, and through the work of volunteers has developed community spirit and helped to improve people's lives in the area.

Mr Mills began to fear for the group's future when its annual general meeting on November 30 at Brandlesholme Library was attended by only three people, including Mr Mills, alongside two representatives from Six Town Housing.

He said: "I determined to do something about it. I analysed the problem, and put it down to total lack of communication.

"I printed warning notices accompanied by personal letters from myself and, with a little help, posted these in nice printed envelopes to 300 doors.

"I spoke to scores of people on the way, enthusing them to support the community voluntary work, and most people were kind and supportive.

"On my travels, on foot, through the middle of December, despite my age and lingering injuries, I got wet through, frozen stiff and fell on slippy paths three times injuring my legs.

"Despite all this I was determined to save The People's Voice."

Mr Mills, who last year survived a serious car crash and lung cancer, has been a pillar of the community for decades.

Overcoming a serious stress related mental health condition, he has became an advocate and supporter for people with mental health issues and addiction.

His campaigns have led him to give a speech on mental health to the House of Lords, as well as produce a book on the subject.

As Mr Mills felt his campaign for the People's Voice beginning to gain traction, he organised a "revival" meeting at 7pm on January 11, setting up the library to create space for the meeting on his own.

He said: "I had no idea how many people would turn up. I went down to the library at 6.55pm and people started to arrive in numbers, and they were still arriving when I left early."

At the meeting Mr Mills gave a speech calling for there to be a "New People's Voice" for residents of Brandlesholme.

He hoped to give the group a fresh start where people would be respected, have a fair opportunity to bring up matters and concerns, and feel like they are contributing to the community.

The group has since reformed and reorganised appointing a new management team and committee and has plans to engage on a variety of projects, including launching a seven day coffee morning and a new youth club.

Mr Mills said: "I'm very optimistic about The New People's Voice. I talk to people and there is a lot of enthusiasm.

"The New People's Voice is going to do a lot of good work this year and forever."