A FORMER principal of Pershore College and magistrate is among those from Worcestershire to be named in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list.

Bill Simpson said he was “a little surprised” to have been made an MBE because he retired nine years ago.

The 73-year-old who lives in Redhill Lane, off London Road, Worcester, received the honour for services to horticulture and the community. “It’s a nice gesture,” he said.

Mr Simpson, who is now a church warden at St Martin’s Church, London Road, and a governor of Red Hill CE Primary School, said he was proud of the fact he was principal of Pershore College when it was the only horticultural college in the country.

He said he thought the award was more to do with his voluntary work, though, including his role as a magistrate and chairman of the Worcestershire branch of the Magistrates’ Association between 2006 and 2009.

The son of a nurseryman, Mr Simpson and his wife Mary moved to Worcester in 1980 when he was appointed principal of Pershore College.

After 11 years he was made director of horticulture with the Royal Horticultural Society.

Until his retirement he was involved in horticultural and business consultancy in Worcestershire and specialised in training staff at garden centres.

The father-of-two and grandfather-of-six served on numerous committees and councils, mainly concerned with horticultural education, examining and assessment, and has been a member of the schools admission appeals panels in Worcestershire and the county council’s independent remuneration panel.

Veteran councillor and political stalwart David Folkes, of Broadway, was also made an MBE for services to the village where he was born and bred.

“I’m very honoured, actually,” he said.

Coun Folkes, a Wychavon district councillor for 23 years and a Broadway parish councillor “for even longer than that”, has been at the heart of his village for most of his 76 years. He is still a member of St Michael’s Church choir, which he joined aged eight, and is a member and former chairman of the Royal British Legion Broadway branch.

A former RAF serviceman and postman, Coun Folkes said his proudest achievement was helping establish Broadway’s activity park on the recreation ground.

Christopher Green, aged 75, of Manby Road, Malvern, gets an MBE for for his voluntary services to education.

Mr Green set up Active Training and Education (ATE) in 1996 to provide children with residential holidays.

“Summer camps bring together young people of all backgrounds, and they provide a really valuable experience,” he said. Mr Green, aged 75, has now retired from ATE, but it continues to provide children with holidays from its Malvern base.

Mr Green taught at the Chase High School from 1983 to 1995. He was also a governor of Malvern Hills College and remains a member of Malvern Theatre Players.


Professor Keith Macdonald Porter. Consultant, Royal Centre for Defence Medicine. For services to the Armed Forces. (Alvechurch)

George Bolsover. Chairman, Aggregate Industries. For services to the Construction Industry. (Pershore)

Richard Boot. For services to Business in the West Midlands. (Kidderminster)

• Rosemary Clarke. Director, Bookstart Gifting Programmes. For services to Education. (Worcestershire)
• Elinor Cordiner. For services to the Drinking Water Inspectorate. (Pershore)
• Anthony Higgs. Senior Executive Officer, Jobcentre Plus, Department for Work and Pensions. (Redditch)
• Adrian McCrudden. Adminstrative Officer, Jobcentre Plus, Department for Work and Pensions. (Worcestershire)
• Jean O’Donnell. For services to the community in Herefordshire. (Hereford)