HEALTH and fitness is the common bond among the Tameside trio who were recognised in the 2020 Queen’s New Year Honours.
NHS Trust chief executive Karen James received an OBE, midwife Nicolette Peel was made an MBE, and veteran fencing coach Les Jones was awarded a British Empire Medal.
Karen, a former nurse, was recognised for her work to make Tameside and Glossop NHS Trust an integrated care organisation of excellence.
She said: “I share this award with all my wonderful colleagues who work tirelessly every day to treat and care for our patients and their families.
“I’m privileged to have such a dedicated team and very supportive partners including Tameside Council and the clinical commissioning group.”
Nicolette Peel, who also works for the Trust, was awarded the MBE for her work with the Mummy’s Star charity which supports women and families with cancer in pregnancy and beyond.
It was after she helped to found the charity in 2013 that Nicolette decided to train as a midwife.
Last June she became only the third person in the country to receive a chief midwifery gold award which is given midwives who go above and beyond the call of duty.
Nicolette’s award is all the more apt as the World Health Organisation has declared 2020, the 200th anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth, as its first global #YearoftheNurseandMidwife.
Kerry Reede Field, the Trust’s head of midwifery, said: “Nicolette has made a huge difference in the three years she has worked here.
“She is one of the most caring, compassionate, positive and enthusiastic people and offers wonderful care.”
Les Jones, the 91-year-old founder of Ashton Fencing Club, has received the British Empire Medal.
In an incredible 64 years in the sport, Les won a range of titles and represented England. He also coached many stars including Susan Green, who fenced for Britain at three Olympics and five world championships.
Les achieved his most notable success in 1992 when two of his pupils were selected for the Barcelona Olympic team – Amanda Ferguson, from Droylsden (now Mrs Baxendale, the assistant head of Greswell Primary School, Denton) and Gary Fletcher from Ashton.
Cllr Brenda Warrington, the executive leader of Tameside Council, said: “My warmest congratulations go to Karen, Nicolette and Les.
“I would like to thank them for their devoted work in the pursuit of excellence and improving the lives of others.”