A LONG-serving St Helens councillor and former mayor has been received an MBE, it has been announced.
Coun Tom Hargreaves receives the honour in the Queen’s birthday honours in recognition of his service to local government.
Council leader Barrie Grunewald was among the first to congratulate Coun Hargreaves.
He said: “This is a very well-deserved honour for a very popular man who works tirelessly in both his local community and for the wider borough.
“Tom gives 110 per cent in everything he does to the benefit of his constituents, family and friends.
“Tom is an excellent politician who has always represented his community vigorously and after nearly 30 years of public service achieving much for his community and St Helens.
“It is a truly fitting way to honour his loyalty and commitment to his town and its people.”
Coun Hargreaves, 76, was first elected to the council in 1984.
He acted as mayor for during 2011/12.
His Mayor’s Appeal raised more than £17,500 for people with dementia. The Hargreaves Dementia Trust (For Sufferers and Carers of People with Dementia in St Helens) is now a thriving registered charity.
Coun Hargreaves spent most of his working life as a gardener with St Helens Council.
He has held various key chairmanships at the council and has also been the Chairman of Sutton Manor Community Primary School for 20 years, is on the Leaf Centre Management Committee and is Chairman of Renew Four Acre.
Coun Hargreaves said: “This came as a bolt out of the blue and I can’t describe how humbled I feel by this royal recognition. It is an absolute honour to serve the community of Bold and the borough of St Helens.
“The people here are amazing with such a generosity of spirit and much of this honour is down to them.”