New Year's Honours: Former Blackburn Children Board chairman awarded British Empire Medal

This Is Lancashire: Laurence Loft with his wife Ruth Laurence Loft with his wife Ruth

A FORMER chairman of Blackburn With Darwen Safeguarding of Children Board, has been awarded a British Empire Medal in the New Year’s Honours List.

Laurence Loft, 71, who retired from the role in March, was given the honour for services to children and young people.

The board, which was set up in 2006, appointed Mr Loft as its first chairman after he retired as magistrates’ clerk for East Lancashire.

Mr Loft, of Ryburn Avenue, said: “I’m honoured to have been given it and I’m it’s nice to know that someone thinks’ I’ve made a positive impact.

“I’ve chaired the group for seven years and I’m most proud of introducing the Engaged Team to try and combat sexual exploitation of children in Blackburn With Darwen.”

Blackburn Coun Salim Sidat has received an MBE for services to the community and policing in Blackburn.

Coun Sidat, who represents the Audley area of the town, is also an independent advisor to the police, and has worked hard to improve community cohesion in the town.

A trained football coach, he first became involved with the local community when he gave football training to local children to get them off the streets.

He said: “My father was in the first set of immigrants who came here in the fifties, they gave up a very good lifestyle to come over here, and mixed within society, and I am the result of that. He would have been very proud.”

Barry Payton, co-founder and manager of Haslingden Community Link and Children’s Centre, was awarded an MBE for services to children and families.

Mr Payton, who retired earlier this year at the age of 66, has been involved with the organisation since its beginings in October 1997.

East Lancashire’s chief fire officer Chris Kenny was awarded The Queen’s Fire Service Medal.

Mr Kenny has led on a number of projects including the Regional Control Centre Project and secured government approval for the North West on the Private Finance Initiative project to deliver 16 new fire stations.

He originally joined Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service in 1978, transferring to Lancashire to take charge of the Service Training Centre at Chorley in 2000.

He said: “I have been fortunate to work with some fantastic people over my 35 years in the Fire and Rescue Service, and this honour recognises their efforts as much as my own.

“There has never been a more challenging time to lead Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service but I remain committed to providing the best service in the country with the decreasing resources at my disposal and the support of my highly professional staff.”

Geoffrey Peter Little, of Haslingden, is deputy chief executive at Manchester City Council and has been awarded an OBE for services to local government while Mark Crabtree, founder and managing director of Burnley-based audio engineering company AMS Neve, who received an OBE.

Comments (6)

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2:18am Wed 1 Jan 14

woolywords says...

Oh yes, another kiss-me-bum accolade, for someone related to a person...as the little ones, carry on doing to the true good works..
Should have asked him, to name one point that has made a positive impact upon within this 'community'.
As ever, hogs, praising themselves with medals, uttering complete hogwash.
And people wonder why I sent my medals back to the State.
This, exemplifies that!
I fought for mine..and he did what, exactly?
Oh yes, another kiss-me-bum accolade, for someone related to a person...as the little ones, carry on doing to the true good works.. Should have asked him, to name one point that has made a positive impact upon within this 'community'. As ever, hogs, praising themselves with medals, uttering complete hogwash. And people wonder why I sent my medals back to the State. This, exemplifies that! I fought for mine..and he did what, exactly? woolywords

2:30am Wed 1 Jan 14

woolywords says...

In his alleged 'Safeguarding of Children', weren't many abused, trafficked, plied with drugs and alcohol, on his 'watch'?
For my medal, people were shot, bayoneted, and when the bullets ran out, simply clubbed to death, with a broken rifle or entrenching tool.
Must be nice, to gain a medal, through a shiny trouser bottomed suit, where you do nothing at all for humanity, apart from, claim expenses for a meeting or other.
ps
Don't forget to save the clipping from the London Gazette, because your award is not official until been 'Gazetted'; to show the grandchildren, how you fought the good fight and achieved, nothing!
In his alleged 'Safeguarding of Children', weren't many abused, trafficked, plied with drugs and alcohol, on his 'watch'? For my medal, people were shot, bayoneted, and when the bullets ran out, simply clubbed to death, with a broken rifle or entrenching tool. Must be nice, to gain a medal, through a shiny trouser bottomed suit, where you do nothing at all for humanity, apart from, claim expenses for a meeting or other. ps Don't forget to save the clipping from the London Gazette, because your award is not official until been 'Gazetted'; to show the grandchildren, how you fought the good fight and achieved, nothing! woolywords

3:02am Wed 1 Jan 14

3 for 10p says...

Is the Honour system set up to divide communities, because that is what it does.
It just sets people against each other
Is the Honour system set up to divide communities, because that is what it does. It just sets people against each other 3 for 10p

8:10am Thu 2 Jan 14

Excluded again says...

woolywords wrote:
In his alleged 'Safeguarding of Children', weren't many abused, trafficked, plied with drugs and alcohol, on his 'watch'?
For my medal, people were shot, bayoneted, and when the bullets ran out, simply clubbed to death, with a broken rifle or entrenching tool.
Must be nice, to gain a medal, through a shiny trouser bottomed suit, where you do nothing at all for humanity, apart from, claim expenses for a meeting or other.
ps
Don't forget to save the clipping from the London Gazette, because your award is not official until been 'Gazetted'; to show the grandchildren, how you fought the good fight and achieved, nothing!
Whilst there is child abuse in Blackburn and Darwen, there is child abuse everywhere. There are apparently aorund 400 children on the local 'at risk' list.

What there has not been in Blackburn with Darwen is any of the scandalous failings of social services that have happened elsewhere which has led to the death of a child or organised child abuse. The pattern is almost always the same - agencies were not talking to each other and chances to intervene were missed.

Those charged with protection are rightly criticised when they get it wrong, but it is hardly fair that they are equally criticised when they don't.
[quote][p][bold]woolywords[/bold] wrote: In his alleged 'Safeguarding of Children', weren't many abused, trafficked, plied with drugs and alcohol, on his 'watch'? For my medal, people were shot, bayoneted, and when the bullets ran out, simply clubbed to death, with a broken rifle or entrenching tool. Must be nice, to gain a medal, through a shiny trouser bottomed suit, where you do nothing at all for humanity, apart from, claim expenses for a meeting or other. ps Don't forget to save the clipping from the London Gazette, because your award is not official until been 'Gazetted'; to show the grandchildren, how you fought the good fight and achieved, nothing![/p][/quote]Whilst there is child abuse in Blackburn and Darwen, there is child abuse everywhere. There are apparently aorund 400 children on the local 'at risk' list. What there has not been in Blackburn with Darwen is any of the scandalous failings of social services that have happened elsewhere which has led to the death of a child or organised child abuse. The pattern is almost always the same - agencies were not talking to each other and chances to intervene were missed. Those charged with protection are rightly criticised when they get it wrong, but it is hardly fair that they are equally criticised when they don't. Excluded again

4:32am Fri 3 Jan 14

woolywords says...

Excluded again wrote:
woolywords wrote:
In his alleged 'Safeguarding of Children', weren't many abused, trafficked, plied with drugs and alcohol, on his 'watch'?
For my medal, people were shot, bayoneted, and when the bullets ran out, simply clubbed to death, with a broken rifle or entrenching tool.
Must be nice, to gain a medal, through a shiny trouser bottomed suit, where you do nothing at all for humanity, apart from, claim expenses for a meeting or other.
ps
Don't forget to save the clipping from the London Gazette, because your award is not official until been 'Gazetted'; to show the grandchildren, how you fought the good fight and achieved, nothing!
Whilst there is child abuse in Blackburn and Darwen, there is child abuse everywhere. There are apparently aorund 400 children on the local 'at risk' list.

What there has not been in Blackburn with Darwen is any of the scandalous failings of social services that have happened elsewhere which has led to the death of a child or organised child abuse. The pattern is almost always the same - agencies were not talking to each other and chances to intervene were missed.

Those charged with protection are rightly criticised when they get it wrong, but it is hardly fair that they are equally criticised when they don't.
Am sorry but I am far from your position on this, as I come from a culture that rewards people, for results. Of all the recent awards, gifted to this borough, through personal commendations, there are not a one of them that I can think of, bar one, that has had a discernible and positive impact. And...I decline to name that person.
There is a criminal charge that relates to dereliction of duty in office, a charge that is rarely used against those whom accept a wage from the public purse. One that I would gladly see laid against more than a few within this Borough, where they have failed both adults and children that are not of my race.
Where 'honour' killings take place, children spirited off to far and distant lands, with 'forced' marriages, de rigeuer.
Am I, a citizen, supposed to sit idly by, biting my tongue, as these things gone on, then, laud those whom had the power of office, to intercede in these events but did nothing? If you think that of me, then the less I think of you.
The philosopher, Edmund Burke, once wrote, 'All that is necessary, for the triumph of evil, is that good men, do nothing.'
These people have the habit of investigating themselves, so any failings never become public knowledge. They always come out with the same trite commentary, as though all reading from the same script..
It's always about covering your own backside, never admitting guilt nor liability, ensuring the status quo, by blaming and firing the least member of the staff, to safeguard their own pensions. Never, that they were in charge, it's their fault and by that admission, falling upon their own sword.
Yesterday, I wrote to No.10, to seek clarification of whom promoted this person for this award, in order to assure myself that it is, as I suspect, one of their own clique and not by public recognition, as was supposed to be the case, in the way that meritorious honours were gifted.
Should I not receive a reply, you can be assured that I will invoke my rights, under the Freedom of Information Act, to find out whom was responsible. As we were supposed to have got rid of the 'old school tie' thing and the 'back-slapping, glad-handing' styles of who is recognised, when it became apparent that there was a club to join, to gain recognition.
If the recipient can list, one more success than their failures, I would be more than content to withdraw and apologise but I somehow doubt that that would ever happen.These faux awards really do pale, when compared to those whom drag children out of burning homes, spend fruitless minutes, trying to breathe life into a corpse or those whom have the utterly thankless task of being at a crash scene, then having to inform a parent of their loss. Or the lollipop ladies, who are there, hail, rain or shine.
We've forgotten how to reward those whom truly deserve, instead we settle for these self-serving nobodies, as being somehow worthy, for never rocking the boat and never taking an action that merits praise..
It denigrates every other medal, in my opinion, and our society as an whole.
[quote][p][bold]Excluded again[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]woolywords[/bold] wrote: In his alleged 'Safeguarding of Children', weren't many abused, trafficked, plied with drugs and alcohol, on his 'watch'? For my medal, people were shot, bayoneted, and when the bullets ran out, simply clubbed to death, with a broken rifle or entrenching tool. Must be nice, to gain a medal, through a shiny trouser bottomed suit, where you do nothing at all for humanity, apart from, claim expenses for a meeting or other. ps Don't forget to save the clipping from the London Gazette, because your award is not official until been 'Gazetted'; to show the grandchildren, how you fought the good fight and achieved, nothing![/p][/quote]Whilst there is child abuse in Blackburn and Darwen, there is child abuse everywhere. There are apparently aorund 400 children on the local 'at risk' list. What there has not been in Blackburn with Darwen is any of the scandalous failings of social services that have happened elsewhere which has led to the death of a child or organised child abuse. The pattern is almost always the same - agencies were not talking to each other and chances to intervene were missed. Those charged with protection are rightly criticised when they get it wrong, but it is hardly fair that they are equally criticised when they don't.[/p][/quote]Am sorry but I am far from your position on this, as I come from a culture that rewards people, for results. Of all the recent awards, gifted to this borough, through personal commendations, there are not a one of them that I can think of, bar one, that has had a discernible and positive impact. And...I decline to name that person. There is a criminal charge that relates to dereliction of duty in office, a charge that is rarely used against those whom accept a wage from the public purse. One that I would gladly see laid against more than a few within this Borough, where they have failed both adults and children that are not of my race. Where 'honour' killings take place, children spirited off to far and distant lands, with 'forced' marriages, de rigeuer. Am I, a citizen, supposed to sit idly by, biting my tongue, as these things gone on, then, laud those whom had the power of office, to intercede in these events but did nothing? If you think that of me, then the less I think of you. The philosopher, Edmund Burke, once wrote, 'All that is necessary, for the triumph of evil, is that good men, do nothing.' These people have the habit of investigating themselves, so any failings never become public knowledge. They always come out with the same trite commentary, as though all reading from the same script.. It's always about covering your own backside, never admitting guilt nor liability, ensuring the status quo, by blaming and firing the least member of the staff, to safeguard their own pensions. Never, that they were in charge, it's their fault and by that admission, falling upon their own sword. Yesterday, I wrote to No.10, to seek clarification of whom promoted this person for this award, in order to assure myself that it is, as I suspect, one of their own clique and not by public recognition, as was supposed to be the case, in the way that meritorious honours were gifted. Should I not receive a reply, you can be assured that I will invoke my rights, under the Freedom of Information Act, to find out whom was responsible. As we were supposed to have got rid of the 'old school tie' thing and the 'back-slapping, glad-handing' styles of who is recognised, when it became apparent that there was a club to join, to gain recognition. If the recipient can list, one more success than their failures, I would be more than content to withdraw and apologise but I somehow doubt that that would ever happen.These faux awards really do pale, when compared to those whom drag children out of burning homes, spend fruitless minutes, trying to breathe life into a corpse or those whom have the utterly thankless task of being at a crash scene, then having to inform a parent of their loss. Or the lollipop ladies, who are there, hail, rain or shine. We've forgotten how to reward those whom truly deserve, instead we settle for these self-serving nobodies, as being somehow worthy, for never rocking the boat and never taking an action that merits praise.. It denigrates every other medal, in my opinion, and our society as an whole. woolywords

7:21am Fri 3 Jan 14

Excluded again says...

Woolywords, what would be a positive impact for someone whose job it is to protect children? The only impact they can have is that children are protected. You can measure when they fail, not when they succeed.

There is never going to be a newspaper headline saying: 400 at risk children in Blackburn and Darwen OK again today.

It sounds from your post as though you are really aiming at some other people who have received awards who you feel are undeserving. You may be right in this (I can think of one example from a couple of years ago) but it is surely not fair to blame Mr Loft for the failings of others.
Woolywords, what would be a positive impact for someone whose job it is to protect children? The only impact they can have is that children are protected. You can measure when they fail, not when they succeed. There is never going to be a newspaper headline saying: 400 at risk children in Blackburn and Darwen OK again today. It sounds from your post as though you are really aiming at some other people who have received awards who you feel are undeserving. You may be right in this (I can think of one example from a couple of years ago) but it is surely not fair to blame Mr Loft for the failings of others. Excluded again

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