A 14-year-old schoolgirl who has been working on community campaigns since the age of seven has received a British Citizen Youth Award.

Hannah Chowdhry of Chigwell was honoured alongside other inspirational children and young people from across the UK at a ceremony held at the Palace of Westminster on Thursday, October 18.

Seven years ago, Hannah, who attends school in Ilford, launched her first campaign, which led to a £50,000 mammoth skull replica being given a home at Redbridge Museum for visitors to enjoy.

More recently she has helped raise funds and gain permission for a nativity scene to be reinstated on the steps of Redbridge Town Hall in Ilford.

She is also involved with the East Ilford Betterment Partnership and is an experienced campaigner and public speaker for the British Pakistani Christian Association.

Hannah has spoken to a 1,000-strong audience at Westminster Cathedral about the treatment of Christians in Pakistan and was invited to an EU conference on minority persecution in the country.

Wilson Chowdhry said despite suffering from juvenile arthritis, his daughter refuses to let it hold her back and is a keen swimmer and footballer and has won a national badminton competition.

Mr Chowdhry said: “We are incredibly proud of Hannah. She is a really community-spirited person and is intent on improving where she lives and goes to school for the benefit of everyone.

“She has always had a tremendous sense of community responsibility, and really wants to make the world a better place.

“She never takes no for an answer, despite the challenges that her juvenile arthritis brings.

“She is a real inspiration to us, and we hope she will inspire others too.”

The British Citizen Youth Awards are run in association with optical chain Specsavers.

Their purpose is to recognise young people who are making a valuable contribution to their community, society or a chosen cause.

Saleem Ismael, store director at Specsavers Ilford, said: ‘Hannah is a really inspirational young lady, who has achieved an amazing amount at a really young age. None of us in store can wait to see what she does next.

‘The British Citizen Youth Awards are a real celebration of the part that so many inspirational young people play in making their local communities, and wider society, a much better place. Long may they continue.’