The Queen’s birthday honours list includes some remarkable Oxfordshire residents.
British Medal Empire (BEM)
83 years old
For services to the community in Bicester, Oxfordshire
- In 2006 she set up a food bank as a safety net for those struggling or had fallen into financial difficulty
- From a project based within a single church available one day a week, it has now progressed to a community-based service operating 5 days a week.
- She has led and developed the Bicester Food Bank through periods of significant change and service transformation.
- She has managed the centre, guided it through changes in premises, recruited and trained teams of volunteers, liaised with local organisations to ensure compliance.
- She has established regular food collections at local supermarkets and churches and lobbied hard on local radio and TV and almost single handedly raised £250,000 for ongoing expenses.
- She has purchased a van and the development of infrastructure.
- This funding has enabled the food bank to move to a new location with its own dedicated wheelchair accessible client centre.
- She has spent many hours talking to clients, helping them to address their problems, signposting them to useful organisations and above all, listening to them.
- She has managed the increased demand during the Covid-19 pandemic with over 4,500 clients receiving 32,000kg of food from April 2020 to March 2021.
- She has been proactive in offering further client support through training in food preparation, budgeting and signposting to other services.
- As part of the Trussell Trust network she has supported other food banks by transferring food stock to them where they faced shortages.
- For the past 7 years she has provided meals on Christmas day for struggling families and those who live alone. Organising a team of volunteers, she spends Christmas Eve preparing the food and creating a festive atmosphere where individuals can enjoy a home cooked meal.
- She established an annual ‘Toy Sunday’ in the local churches where parishioners donate new toys and wrapping paper to ensure each child has a gift to open.
- All this work has been undertaken voluntarily, dedicating her life to better others. Now at the age of 83, she is reducing her hours whilst still ensuring her volunteers continue her legacy and mission to make a difference to those in need.
Members of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)
47 years old
Deputy Executive Chair, UK Research and Innovation. For services to Covid-19 Research
- She has been instrumental in enabling the UK’s research and innovation community to respond rapidly to the research challenges arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.
- Her leadership and ability to bring colleagues together quickly and successfully from across varied disciplines, and to work effectively with government and the research community, has led to a unified and cross-disciplinary funding response.
- She led the design, coordination and implementation of the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) rapid response call for research and innovation projects to address specific Covid-19 issues. Generating huge interest from the UK research and innovation community with almost 1,500 applications being received within the first 10 weeks, leading to the funding of nearly 100 projects supporting transformative research in areas such as clinical and healthcare management, engineering and macroeconomic and fiscal analysis.
- She has enabled the vital work of the UK research community in response to the crisis to progress with an aim to limit the outbreak, protect life, inform policy, and allow unprecedented rapid progress towards effective treatments.
- Despite being in post less than a year, working part time and combining working remotely through lockdown with being an active academic she has worked tirelessly to deliver at pace
65 years old
Chairman, League of Advanced European Neutron Sources. For services to Science
- Throughout his career, he has contributed to significant advances in neutron scattering science, through his own original research, his leadership of major facilities in Sweden, USA and the UK, and his scientific leadership at the European level.
- As a Royal Society Research Fellow at Oxford University, he specialised in studies of the structures of disordered materials, from high temperature superconductors to liquid metal alloys.
- He has authored over 200 research papers in the fields of neutron scattering and computer modelling. His focus on the development of data analysis and data management tools led him to pioneer the Reverse Monte Carlo method of structural modelling, cited in over 2000 published papers.
- Under his leadership, the UK’s ISIS Neutron and Muon Source has delivered outstanding scientific results positioning itself at the centre of a growing community of some 3000 academic and industrial researchers across a spectrum of subjects including clean energy, the environment, pharmaceuticals, health care, nanotechnology, materials engineering, catalysis and polymers.
- He has supported the development of neutron research programmes with Sweden and Italy, stimulating significant expansion of their ISIS user communities and bringing in additional funding into the UK.
- He has led initiatives to broaden ISIS’s international user base to include China and India.
- He pioneered the application of modern techniques including Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, and Machine Learning to maximise the information extracted from large volumes of experimental data.
- He saw the potential to harness additional resources in this field through collaboration with colleagues in the USA and Japan, and led an international software development initiative, which has significantly enhanced the value of data obtained at ISIS and at similar facilities around the world.
- He has been central to the formulation of the UK’s Neutron strategy, and highly influential in Europe through his role on the steering committee of the Institut Laue-Langevin; his leadership of the major European Neutron Framework Programme, bringing together the neutron user community from 27 member states; and his role as Deputy Chairman of LENS, the League of Advanced European Neutron Sources.
- He was Director of the Studsvik Neutron Research Laboratory in Sweden and Deputy Director for Neutron Sciences at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in the USA.
- Most recently he has continued to promote both European and international scientific collaboration through his role in realising the European Spallation Source (ESS); helping to shape the direction of the ESS project through careful use of UK funding.
56 years old
Lately Chair, The Prayer Book Society. For services to the Church of England
- Her involvement with the Prayer Book Society (PBS) regionally and nationally spans more than 30 years,
- She was one of the first trustees of the society when it became a limited company in 2003.
- She focused on the strategic direction of the society and her achievements over the years include the introduction of major changes to the PBS annual conference programme which have resulted in significant increases in attendances as it continues to grow and develop.
- By introducing a bursary scheme under her leadership, the society has helped clergy, ordinands and young people aged under 30 to attend the conference each year.
- She has overseen the appointment of the society’s first churches and clergy co-ordinator, who has successfully built relationships with clergy, ordinands and theological colleges, holding special seminars for ordinands of all church traditions, and offering free honorary membership to ordinands and curates in training.
- She has introduced the prayer books for prisoners scheme.
- She retired as Chairman in September last year, after 14 years.
52 years old
Co-Founder, Spennylympics. For services to the Motor Neurone Disease Association
22 years old
Co-Founder, Spennylypics. For services to the Motor Neurone Disease Association
- They are the co-founders of Spennylypics.
- During the 17 days of the Tokyo Olympics, they took part in every Olympic sport, a total of 102, in order to raise money for the Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA), including a 240km cycle ride, show-jumping, swimming, windsurfing, tennis, golf, gymnastics, triathlon and a marathon.
- All this was to mark the 10th anniversary of the death of Stuart’s brother, Spencer (known as Spenny) from Motor Neurone Disease.
- Initially setting a target to raise £10,000, they received overwhelming support from over 6000 supporters across the world and from British Olympians both past and present, and have raised around £180,000.
Their story has received national and international coverage and they have inspired many people by their efforts.