Pictures: North Devon volunteers pick up their gongs

18:08 30 April 2014

Diana Lewis is presented with her British Empire Medal by the Lord Lieutenant of Devon, Sir Eric Dancer.

Diana Lewis is presented with her British Empire Medal by the Lord Lieutenant of Devon, Sir Eric Dancer.

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Charity workers Diana Lewis and Mary For

Diana Lewis pictured with husband ---- after being presented with her British Empire Medal in a ceremony at County Hall in Exeter.Diana Lewis pictured with husband ---- after being presented with her British Empire Medal in a ceremony at County Hall in Exeter.

NORTH Devon community champions enjoyed an unforgettable day when they were presented with New Years Honours gongs by the Lord Lieutenant of Devon.

Diana Lewis of North Devon Animal Ambulance and Mary Bond from Barnstaple both received a British Empire Medal at a ceremony in Exeter’s County Hall presided over by Sir Eric Dancer.

Mrs Lewis, who was accompanied by her husband Michael and Animal Ambulance treasurer Jane Dennis-Smithers plus chairman Pauline Bussell, said it had been a memorable experience.

“It was wonderful day, one of the loveliest days I have ever had,” she said.

Mary Ford from Barnstaple receives her British Empire Medal from Sir Eric Dancer.Mary Ford from Barnstaple receives her British Empire Medal from Sir Eric Dancer.

“I do feel very strongly that although my name may be on it, the medal was for the charity, and it is only due to the wonderful support and trust the North Devon public have in our charity that we have been recognised.

“One of the happiest parts of the day was the fact so many people, including the Lord Lieutenant, were so pleased that an animal charity had been recognised.”

Mary Ford received her BEM for services to the community, particularly the elderly and homeless people in Barnstaple.

Two other North Devon New Years Honours recipients were awarded an MBE – Catherine Lester-Walker from Alwington for her work with military charity SSAFA and Rosemary Day from Bideford for ‘voluntary service to the environment and to the community.

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