East Lancs community heroes to receive prestigious medals

Bill Honeywell

Bill Honeywell

First published in News This Is Lancashire: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

COMMUNITY leaders and charity campaigners from East Lancashire will be honoured at a glittering ceremony.

Recipients of the BEM, British Empire Medal, include Bill Honeywell, 61, from West Bradford, who was recognised for raising more than £60,000 for charities including the Rosemere Cancer Foundation and Cancer Research UK.

Mr Honeywell, who is also a member of Clitheroe Rotary Club and a trustee of Clitheroe Grammar School, said: “I’m really looking forward to the ceremony.

“I’m proud of what I have achieved but I always feel that I can do more.

“I’ve already planned two more fund-raising events this year including abseiling down The Big One in Blackpool in June.

“My wife Valerie, my two children and my parents are all coming along which will be a great experience.”

Mr Honeywell, along with Laurence Loft, from Blackburn, will be presented with their awards at Shire Hall, Lancaster Castle on Friday, April 25.

Mr Loft will receive his BEM for services to children and young people.

Mr Loft retired from Blackburn Magistrates’ Court in 2000 and worked voluntarily as chairman of the Blackburn with Darwen Local Safeguarding Children Board for six years.

Mr Loft, 72, said: “I was absolutely surprised and quite flattered when I was told that I had been awarded the BEM.

“I was really very grateful that people had recognised me in that way.

“I’m very much looking forward to going to The Shire Hall with my wife Ruth and the rest of my family.”

Margaret Rigby, 98, from Chorley, will also be receiving her BEM at the event, for services to Girl Guides in Lancashire.

She contributed 86 years of continuous service to the Girl Guiding movement in the Chorley district.

She has been a member of Chorley Trefoil Guild, which supports Girl Guiding UK, since 1972, and still helps out at the Guy’s Farm Guide Centre.

The BEM rewards an achievement or contribution of a very 'hands-on' service to the community.

The Lord-Lieutenant of Lancashire, Lord Shuttleworth, will be making the presentations, which were announced in The Queen's New Year Honours List.

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