COMMUNITY heroes in Worcestershire are among those to receive awards in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list.

Mary Drinkwater, who served as mayor of Worcester in a political career that spanned over 20 years, will be awarded with an MBE for her services to the city.

Also receiving an MBE is Howard Groves for his services to education.

Leukaemia campaigner Sue Sollis has been awarded a British Empire Medal alongside organ donation awareness campaigner Michael Amies and visually impaired sport volunteer Dina Murdie.

Mrs Drinkwater said she was “surprised and delighted as well as deeply proud and honoured” to be receiving the honour.

Born and bred in Castle Place, Worcester, Mrs Drinkwater has volunteered in the city for more than 70 years, beginning at St Alban’s orphanage in Severn Street.

She became a city councillor for St Stephens in 1992 and spent eight years on the city council.

As mayor from 2000, she hosted the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh at a lunch in the Guildhall.

She became a county councillor in 2001, becoming an advisor to the portfolio holder for adult and community services for seven years, and served on several scrutiny panels.

She became chairman of the county council in 2010 – the first in more than 25 years – before losing her seat at the 2013 election.

An avid fundraiser, Mrs Drinkwater raised money for the mayor’s charities throughout her career, generating £9,800 for the Arthritis Research Campaign and £3,400 for St Richard’s Hospice.

She has been a governor at Perdiswell School in Worcester for more than 20 years and a governor at St Barnabas CE Primary School. She is also a trustee of St Richard’s Hospice and St Swithun’s charity.

Leukaemia campaigner Sue Sollis will receive a BEM for her work in founding the The Tracy Sollis Leukaemia Trust.

She set up the charity in 1996 in memory of her daughter Tracy who died from the illness aged just 15.

The aim of the Evesham-based charity is to support people suffering from leukaemia as well as help fund key research.

Mrs Sollis said she was “absolutely thrilled, humbled and privileged” to be receiving the honour.

She said: “I couldn’t quite believe it. It was such a surprise.

“The first I knew about it was when a letter came through the post marked 'Urgent’ from the Cabinet Office. I though what on earth could this be? I didn’t know what to think.”

Mrs Sollis successfully raised £100,000 for a research laboratory which is now located within the Anthony Nolan Research Institute at the Royal Free Hospital in London.

During 2017, the trust has purchased more than £50,000 of research equipment and spent £10,000 on providing complementary therapy.

The trust funds a free complementary therapist who sees between 500 and 600 patients a year.

Michael Amies has been awarded a BEM for his services to healthcare.

Mr Amies, of Pershore, previously served as chairman of the organ donation committee for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust.

He lost his adopted daughter Catherine to kidney failure and diabetes in 2010 aged just 38. She had been waiting for a double kidney and pancreas transplant for two years.

Miss Amies also registered as an organ donor before her death – an act unknown to Mr Amies - which benefited many others. After her death, her liver was immediately used for a life-saving transplant for another woman.

Mr Amies, along with his wife Elisabeth, has campaigned endlessly to raise awareness of organ donation in Worcestershire.

Dina Murdie has been involved in the goalball community for more than 30 years.

Through her voluntary work, she has played as well as help organise events and inspired countless visually impaired athletes.