COMMUNITY champions have been rewarded by the Queen for their dedicated service.
Four Northumberland residents learnt they had earned British Empire Medals (BEM) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List earlier this year.
And now they have been presented with their awards by the Duchess of Northumberland, in her capacity as the Queen’s Lord Lieutenant for the county.
The recipients included Paul Henry Brent, from Widdrington, who is a senior officer at HMP Northumberland.
The 61-year-old was given the award in recognition of his work for the prison service, in particular helping to develop prisoner equality and transforming both staff and prisoners’ perceptions and knowledge of diversity and cultural issues.
Sylvia Cape, 74, from Morpeth, was also honoured for her work at HMP Northumberland, where she is the backbone of the volunteer operation running the visitors’ centre, which supports children, partners, family members and friends of prisoners.
She has dedicated more than half her life to volunteering.
The other recipients were Daniel Hodgson, from Bilton, who received the medal for his sustained contribution to local rugby, and Eileen Rogerson, from Kirkwhelpington, who has carried out substantial voluntary work in her community.
The Duchess said: “To receive a British Empire Award is an incredible achievement and I’d like to congratulate the four very worthy recipients for all their dedicated work and commitment over many years.
“They are a credit to Northumberland.”
The BEM was revived in 2012 for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee to recognise voluntary work in the community.