There is a young lady called Aurelia who sells The Big Issue in Newbury by W.H.Smith.
She has been selling the magazine there for several years, in all weathers. She originates from Romania and lives in one room with her two children and mother.
She recently featured in a photographic survey of Newbury and had her photograph exhibited at the Corn Exchange. I congratulated her on this when I bought a Big Issue copy from her about a month ago.
Recently Aurelia was abused and had cola poured on top of her head by youths. Subsequently, while the Newbury Weekly News was interviewing her at her usual pitch, they reported that she was verbally abused by two separate passing women.
This is outrageous. I made a point of looking for Aurelia this morning but she was not there. I wanted to say how much I am appalled by such ridiculous and offensive abuse. I will make a point of speaking to her soon.
As far as I am concerned, Aurelia is an integral part of Newbury and I hope that she and her family remain here and prosper for many years to come. The people who have abused and tormented her are complete idiots.