SHE is the woman who has launched a community group which has made a real difference in a Southampton road.

And now Claire Hawkins’ efforts have got her nominated for the Daily Echo’s Community Star Campaign The 37-year-old from Shirley set up the Malfriends Group which was originally launched a neighbourhood watch to help people living in Malmesbury Road, Shirley back in 2012.

Since then the group has grown and has gone from strength to strength and now boasts 30 members.

Claire, who is a mum-of-one, works as a receptionist for Foundry Lane Primary School and goes above and beyond to help residents in the road.

She regularly keeps people up-to-date with the latest crime issues which are passed on to her by police.

She has also helped spruce up the area by organising community clean-ups, and has dealt with planning issues on behalf of residents.

She was nominated by Freemantle Conservative councillor Jeremy Moulton. He said: “Claire does a great job for Malmesbury Road. She has re-invigorated community spirit in the area and she and her neighbours have achieved lots of positive improvements.”

Claire’s neighbour Anne Logan echoed Mr Moulton’s comments and added: “Claire does fantastic work for Malmesbury Road and all the neighbours really appreciate the hours of effort that she puts in.

She has a made a real difference.”

After finding out she was nominated, Claire said: “I can’t believe it. I am really surprised. I started the group to get the community together.”

“I have lived here for so many years and I saw a real change in the area and I wanted to make it better for people to live in.”