THREE people who have helped make South Tyneside a better place have received recognition in the New Year’s Honours list.
Carol Falconer, from Jarrow, has been made a Member of the British Empire (MBE) for her services to young people.
Richard Miles, a Northumbria Police community engagement officer for South Tyneside, has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) for his services to the community, and the former executive headteacher of St Wilfrid’s RC College in South Shields, Nick Hurn, was bestowed with an Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to education.
Mrs Falconer, who is president of the Durham North Country Girl Guide Association, said she was “surprised but delighted” to receive her award.
The mother-of-two, who lives in Bede Burn Road, Jarrow, said: “It’s come as a great surprise but I am delighted to have receive the award, especially for something which I love to do. It’s quite an honour.”
The 74-year-old has been a dedicated volunteer to girl guiding for more than 50 years and during this time she has led hundreds of youngsters through life-changing activities and events.
She has also been responsible for a number of fundrasing events and has saved units from the brink of closure.
Mrs Falconer, who still helps with the St Peter’s Brownies, based in York Avenue, in Jarrow, said: “I joined up when I was 10 years old and basically I just never left.
“It’s been one of those things that I’ve loved being part of and I think I will continue forever, or at least for as long as I can.”
Mrs Falconer, who is married to David, was previously award the Girl Guide Association’s 40-year long-service award.
‘Great honour’ for retired cop
BEING awarded a British Empire Medal is a “great honour” for a retired South Tyneside police officer.
Richard Miles was one of Northumbria Police’s first ever neighbourhood sergeants and his job was to keep a watchful eye over the Whiteleas and Biddick Hall estates in South Shields.
After serving 21 years – 14 of those at the Met in London – Mr Miles retired.
But in 2008 he decided to put his experience and knowledge to good use and became a community enforcement officer for Northumbria Police.
Mr Miles, who lives in Ryton, Gateshead, says he is humbled to receive a BEM for his services to the community.
The 54-year-old said: “Over the years I have met so many exceptional people through work and it’s been a privilege to have worked alongside them.
“To receive the BEM is wonderful. Not only has it come as a total surprise, it’s such a great honour.”
In 2011, Mr Miles led Arch South Tyneside, a scheme to increase the number of hate incidents reported, support victims and to improve action taken against offenders.
He was also instrumental in the development and promotion of third-party reporting systems and improving the South Tyneside Independent Advisory Group.