FOUR Tynedale residents were presented with British Empire Medals for their voluntary service in their communities.

The Duchess of Northumberland, in her capacity as the Queen’s Lord Lieutenant for the county, welcomed Hexham’s the Rev. Janet Jackson (73), Haydon Bridge’s Peter Robertson (76), Wylam’s Ken John (81) and Haltwhistle’s Diana Robison to Alnwick Caste for an investiture ceremony after all four were recipients of the BEM in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours.

Janet was awarded the honour for services to bereaved families in the North-East for more than 30 years. She was instrumental in setting up a dedicated bereavement group for grieving children at Tynedale Hospice at Home.

Peter’s outstanding services to rugby union across the North-East and in Scotland, predominantly as a referee. Having played the game at a high standard and then voluntarily coaching at Tynedale, he became an internationally renowned referee and elite refereeing assessor for the Scottish Rugby Union.

A former justice of the peace at Tynedale Magistrates’ Court, Ken has volunteered for numerous organisations in his home village of Wylam helping to improve facilities and enhance the quality of life of local residents. He has played a pivotal role in the Wylam Community Playing Fields Association and the Wylam Community Orchard, as well as being an active supporter of St Oswin’s Church and a governor at Wylam First and Prudhoe High schools.

Diana has thrown herself wholeheartedly into supporting church activities for over 50 years in Haltwhistle, delivering the parish magazine and collecting for appeals for Christian Aid Week. She spent a decade voluntarily visiting patients in Haltwhistle War Memorial Hospital each week, and has been a big supporter of the Haltwhistle Dementia Support Group for more than 40 years.