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Honours for riot pastor and campaigner

20 June 2014


Campaign: the Revd Colin Coward

Campaign: the Revd Colin Coward

A PRIEST who provided counselling and support services to police officers during the Tottenham riots in 2011 has been appointed MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours list for services to the Tottenham community.

He is the Revd John Wood, who has been Vicar of St Ann's, Tottenham, for 20 years. During this time, he has built up "substantial community and youth engagement networks", including chaplaincy services for Haringey Police, and St Ann's Hospital (Features, 3 August 2012).

"Tottenham has, at times, struggled with its reputation in the media," he said; "so I'll be delighted if the award becomes a story not about me, but the many talented and committed people both in the church and the community."

The director of Changing Attitude, the Revd Colin Coward, was also appointed MBE. The group, which campaigns for "the day when the Anglican Church fully accepts, welcomes, and offers equality of opportunity to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people", welcomed the award.

Also appointed MBE was Canon Charles Dobbin, Vicar of Moor Allerton, Leeds, and interfaith relations officer for the new diocese of West Yorkshire & the Dales, for services to community cohesion. "On top of his parish responsibilities, Charles Dobbin works hard to relate to all religious groups, setting up new and imaginative initiatives to develop links across communities," the Bishop of Leeds, the Rt Revd Nick Baines, said.

Sarah Thorley, a member of the South London Inter-Faith Group, was appointed MBE for services to interfaith relations in South London.

The Revd Shuna Body, an NSM who serves Brookland, Fairfield, Brenzett with Snargate and Lydd, in Romney Marsh, Kent, and who chairs the British Disabled Fencing Association, has been appointed MBE for services to wheelchair fencing.

The Revd Paul Cowley, Assistant Curate of St Paul's, Onslow Square, with St Augustine's, Queen's Gate, London, now a Holy Trinity, Brompton, church-plant, has been appointed MBE for services to ex-offenders. Expelled from school at 15, he lived on the streets, turned to crime, and was sentenced to prison. After serving in the Army, he completed an Alpha course, experienced a conversion, and began working in prison ministry. Ordained in 2002, he now leads a team whose work includes Alpha for Prisons, Caring for Ex-Offenders, Alpha for Forces, and the William Wilberforce Trust.

Alan Wilkinson, the co-founder of Music in Country Churches, has been appointed MBE, for services to music, and for charitable services; and Margaret Fulford, a former Mothers' Union president in Birmingham diocese, received the same honour for services to the MU and to the community in Knowle, West Midlands.

Also appointed MBE was Sally Badham, the former president of the Church Monuments Society, for services to the conservation of church monuments. Harriet Devlin was appointed MBE for services to heritage and the historic environment. Ms Devlin runs the University of Birmingham's Historic Environment Conservation postgraduate course in Telford, and completed the conservation of a Welsh Nonconformist chapel.

The work of Gordon Lee, a musician who founded the Malachi Community Trust in Birmingham, which supports children affected by family breakdown, has been recognised with an OBE.

Honours for people involved in education included an OBE for Cherry Edwards, the head teacher of Bourne Abbey C of E Primary Academy, Bourne, near Sleaford,in Lincolnshire, and MBEs for Christine Eyden, a former teacherat Charlton C of E Primary School, Dover; Emlyn Roberts, a local education authority leader and former headteacher of Oakmeadow C of E Primary and Nursery School, Bayston Hill, Shrewsbury; Teresa Jane Sandison, director of lifelong learning and staff development at the University of Winchester, for services to higher education; Patricia Scott, head teacher of St Luke's High School, East Renfrewshire; and David Yates, a volunteer at Church Lench C of E First School, Evesham, Worcestershire.

A BEM was awarded to Rose Marie Milton, the child and family liaison officer at St Mary's C of E Primary School, East Folkstone.

A former Vicar of St John's, Ben Rhydding, near Ilkley, the Revd Brian Gregory, was awarded the BEM for his work as founder and chairman of the Friendship Foundation, which supports disadvantaged people in Romania.

BEMs were also awarded to Patricia Britton, who has run a pensioners' lunch club at St Anne's, Bristol, for 30 years; Carol Evans, for voluntary and charitable services to Christian Aid, and to the community in Porthcawl, Bridgend; and Peter Reeder, a retired pig-breeder, for services to agriculture and the community in South Lopham, Norfolk, where he has lived all his life. His contribution includes being a churchwarden for 40 years.

Honours in the Queen's personal gift include MVOs for David Baldwin, RVM, Serjeant of the Vestry at the Chapel Royal, St James's Palace, an authority on the chapel's history; and Philip Berg, Master of the Music at the Queen's Chapel of the Savoy since 1994.

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