*Issued on behalf of the Lord Lieutenant’s office*
The Queen’s representative in Lancashire is calling on people to nominate good work in their community for a national Honour.
The BEM (Medallist of the Order of the British Empire) rewards an individual’s achievement or contribution to the community in a local area.
The Lord-Lieutenant of Lancashire, Lord Shuttleworth KG KCVO, has made his call ahead of a prestigious Honours ceremony taking place at Lancaster Castle on Friday (21 September).
Six recipients from Lancashire will receive a BEM (Medallist of the Order of the British Empire) in the historic and majestic surroundings of the castle.
One of the people who will receive their award is Frank McKnight from Thornton Cleveleys.
Frank receives his BEM for more than 20 years’ voluntary service to help ex-service personnel, and his fundraising work for the Royal National Lifeboat Institute.
He served in the Royal Navy for 26 years, including time in the Falklands. After leaving the Navy, he became involved with SSAFA, the UK’s oldest national tri-service military charity. He is now the branch treasurer for Lancashire.
The charity, based at Fulwood Barracks in Preston, works to identify help and support for veterans and serving personnel, and their dependents, liaising with armed forces benevolent funds.
He said: “I was delighted and surprised when I found out that I’d received this Honour. It’s the last thing that I expected.
“The SSAFA depends on volunteers to carry out its work. I started volunteering to help other people, and I’ve now been with them for many years. While this is an individual Honour, I look upon it as recognising the work of other people from the charity.”
Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Lancashire, The Lord Shuttleworth KG KCVO, will make the presentations at the castle, which were announced in The Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
Lord Shuttleworth said: “Each and every day, work takes place around our county that makes a real difference to people’s lives. This is often unknown outside of that community, but nominating them for a BEM is an excellent opportunity to give someone the recognition which they rightly deserve.
“I am privileged to have the duty of presenting British Empire Medals on behalf of Her Majesty The Queen to Lancashire residents. As always, I look forward to this occasion and to meeting the recipients and their families.”
This year’s BEM recipients, who will receive their medals at Lancaster Castle on Friday 21 September, are:
*Laurence Bates from Leyland, near Preston. For services to young people in Lancashire.
*Mrs Lowri Cope from Helmshore. For services to the community in Helmshore.
*Mrs Susan Jones from Ansdell, near Lytham St Annes. For services to foster care children and the church.
*Francis McKnight from Thornton Cleveleys. For voluntary service to ex-service personnel, the Royal National Lifeboat Institute and to charity.
*Gordon Oates from Fleetwood. For services to the community in Fleetwood.
*Mrs Nicola Parry from Preston. For services to Midwifery.
The BEM was also awarded to Mr Stephen Maden from Nelson for his services to Blind and Partially Sighted People in Lancashire. Mr Maden, a hugely respected founder member of Pendle Voice Talking Newspaper, had been informed of the honour. He sadly died at home, before having the chance to accept it in person. Mrs Maxine Maden will be receiving the award on behalf of her late husband.
Anyone can put forward a nomination for the BEM. You can find out how on the honours website www.gov.uk/honours.