Village fundraising stalwart and long-serving special school governor in New Year’s Honours list

Barbara Bartlett with her late husband Richard 'Dick' Bartlett. Photo courtesy of Barbara NNL-181231-111814001
Barbara Bartlett with her late husband Richard 'Dick' Bartlett. Photo courtesy of Barbara NNL-181231-111814001

A village fundraising stalwart and a long-serving special school governor are among those named in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list.

Barbara Bartlett said she was ‘overwhelmed’ to be made a Medallist of the Order of the British Empire for services to the community in Chipping Warden.

Barbara Bartlett

Barbara Bartlett

The 81-year-old great-grandmother has raised thousands of pounds for village causes over the years, in particular for Church of St Peter and St Paul.

“It’s all a bit overwhelming but it’s for everyone, I feel very honoured to receive it but I would like to think it’s for the whole of Chipping Warden,” she said.

A whole calendar of events is organised every year with Barbara at the heart of it – from pancake races and murder mysteries to cake sales and lots more.

Barbara said her fundraising efforts are not possible without her hard-working team around her from all over the village, as everyone supports each other.

“It’s about bringing people together for fundraising and fun raising too as it’s good to have fun as well,” she said.

Her son wrote on Facebook: “For as long as I can remember mum has been raising money for the church (church warden for over 30 years) and other causes in the village, still going strong at 81 and we are immensely proud of her. Well done Mother.”

The Facebook post also has dozens of kind messages saying Barbara’s BEM is well-deserved.

Another Banburyshire recipient of a New Year Honour is a former chair of governors at Frank Wise School who will receive an MBE for services to education and community.

Douglas Seymour has since moved to north Devon but was a key part of Frank Wise for 30 years and is still a trustee at Swalcliffe School.

He told the North Devon Gazette: “I think that it’s an honour and a privilege to be acknowledged for what you do and I am sure that there are lots of people out there doing things that go unnoticed.

“It’s a shame that we can’t find a way of rewarding those people that you never hear about.”

Also on the long list of recipients is Susan Vaile from Long Compton, who will be given a BEM for voluntary service in Warwickshire.