‘Remarkable’ Suffolk stalwarts awarded with British Empire Medal

From left, Alison Evans, Roy Tricker, Lady Clare and James Manning. Picture: GREGG BROWN

From left, Alison Evans, Roy Tricker, Lady Clare and James Manning. Picture: GREGG BROWN

An Ipswich man who gives his time to widen opportunities for children from deprived backgrounds has been recognised by the Queen.

Lady Clare congratulates James Manning on his BEM. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Lady Clare congratulates James Manning on his BEM. Picture: GREGG BROWN

James Manning was one of three Suffolk stalwarts to receive a British Empire Medal (BEM) during a ceremony at The Racing Stables in Euston today.

The 63-year-old is one of the founders of the Whitton Youth Partnership, a charity which supports young people in north-west Ipswich.

He has been a governor at Stoke High School for 24 years, and is also chairman of the group running Castle Hill Community Centre.

Recipients are nominated by members of the public for commendable civil or military work.

Lady Clare hands Alison Evans her award. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Lady Clare hands Alison Evans her award. Picture: GREGG BROWN


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Mr Manning was selected for his services to young people and the community of Ipswich.

“The whole thing was a complete surprise, I knew nothing about it,” he said.

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“It was a very humbling experience for the fact people have taken the bother to sit down to fill in official forms, which are never easy to complete, and their hard work has been rewarded in that I was successful, which I’m very grateful for.”

Alison Evans, of Beccles, was awarded a BEM for her services to the community.

The ceremony was held at The Racing Stables in Euston. Picture: GREGG BROWN

The ceremony was held at The Racing Stables in Euston. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Piano and singing teacher Miss Evans is a warden of the Church of St Lawrence in South Cove, and plays organ for more than 10 churches.

She has served on the friends council of St Edmundsbury Cathedral for the last six years, and is an active member of the Royal British Legion.

“I feel hugely honoured,” Miss Evans said.

Roy Tricker, of Ipswich, was recognised for his services to heritage in Suffolk.

Mr Tricker has written many books and guides about churches all over the county, and has been a lay reader for the Church of England.

For 11 years he worked as a field officer with the Churches Conservation Trust.

The Lord Lieutenant of Suffolk, Clare Countess of Euston, presented the recipients with their awards.

She said: “It was a great privilege this morning to present, on behalf of Her Majesty The Queen, three remarkable Suffolk citizens with the BEM.

“This medal was reinstated by Her Majesty The Queen in her diamond jubilee year to recognise the extraordinary contribution made by individuals to their local communities.

“It is easy to talk of unsung heroes but in Suffolk perhaps we do not show off enough.

“I am constantly in awe of all those people I meet who with total dedication and no expectation of credit for themselves do so much work in all corners of this exceptional county.”

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