News

January 20th 2017

Northamptonshire resident awarded MBE

Deirdre Newham

Deirdre Newham

A well- known figure in Northamptonshire has been awarded a MBE for her services to the community in the 2017 New Year’s Honours List.

Deirdre Newham, has served in many capacities over the years, including being appointed as a Magistrate on the Northampton bench in 1977; serving as a Lay Member of the Lord Chancellor’s Interview Panel for Judicial Appointments in 1997; being a Board Member of the Prince’s Youth Business Trust; a former Chairman of the Governors of the University of Northampton, being the Chair of the Northamptonshire Police Authority and Chairman of the Northampton High School for Girls. Most of these appointments were in an entirely voluntary capacity.

Deirdre Newham 1

Deirdre Newham

In 2017, Deirdre continues to serve the community in a wide range of roles which include being a Deputy Lieutenant for the County of Northamptonshire, and being a member of the East Midlands Reserve Forces and Cadets Association (RFCA) Northamptonshire County Committee, helping to raise awareness about reserves and cadets in the region.

As a self-confessed ‘people person’ Deirdre explained that she never expected to be awarded for her voluntary efforts: “I consider myself to be lucky to be awarded. I’ve done a lot over the years, but I never expected to receive a MBE.

“I didn’t set out to work in any particular voluntary role, but opportunities have come up and I always believe that if possible you should pursue activities you enjoy.”

Speaking about her involvement in the East Midlands RFCA Northamptonshire County Committee, Deirdre explained that she has always had an interest in the Armed Forces thanks to members of her family serving with the Army and forming links to military charities when she was a part of the Citizens Advice Bureau.

Deirdre continued: “I initially started working at the Northampton Citizens Advice Bureau as a volunteer in the early 1970s, before later being appointed as its full-time manager and leading it to local independence as a registered charity. As my experience developed, I also become a member of the Area Committee of the National Association of Citizens Advice Bureau and then the National Council. This was a great experience as I worked with many fantastic volunteers over the years, and formed contacts at local charities including SSAFA.

“I have always had an interest in the Armed Forces Community. My father served in the Army and my daughter served in the Royal Army Dental Corps for 10 years. My appointment to the RFCA County Committee gave me the opportunity to raise the awareness of the Reserve Forces and Cadets Association and their operation in Northamptonshire.

“In all of these activities I have enjoyed working with other people, most of them volunteers, and have been pleased to assist in hopefully making a difference in the community and am honoured to receive this recognition.”

“I didn’t set out to work in any particular voluntary role, but opportunities have come up and I always believe that if possible you should pursue activities you enjoy.”