New Year's day honours for Wirralians WIRRALIANS were recognised in the New Year Honours list for their dedication to the community, charity, science and local government.
Retired magistrate Arthur Waller, Wendie Darlington, director of fundraising at Claire House, the Reverend Margaret Fletcher and Professor Philip Woodworth of the National Oceanography Centre in Liverpool all received MBEs.
Howard Cooper, former Director of Children’s Services in Wirral, was given a CBE for services to local government.
He is currently Interim Director of Wirral’s Department of Adult Services following the departure of former director John Webb.
Mr Waller, from New Ferry, said his MBE was “the best Christmas present I’ve ever had”.
A former Army Warrant officer, he was a magistrate for 27 years before his retirement in August 2009.
Mr Waller worked for Wirral Council for 25 years as a swimming pool manager and before his retirement was a Principal Recreation Officer, based at Europa Pools in Birkenhead.
He co-founded New Ferry Regeneration Action Group with Mel Roberts and is a member of the Friends of New Ferry Park and honorary secretary of the Royal Army Ordnance Corps & Royal Logistics Corps (RAOC & RLC) Association Merseyside.
He also works with a number of charities for the disabled and was president of Birkenhead PHAB (physically handicapped, able-bodied) Club before it closed in July last year.
Mr Waller, who has two children and six grandchildren, regularly gives talks on the History
of Birkenhead at meetings of charities and community groups.
He said: “The letter came in late November and I was just surprised to get it. I’m made up.”
Professor Philip Woodworth, from Thornton Hough, has worked at the National Oceanographic Centre – originally the Proudman Oceanographic Laboratory – since 1983.
Originally from Claughton, he studied at Durham University.
Initially based at Bidston Observatory, the laboratory moved to Liverpool in 2003. In 2009 it joined with its southern counterpart in Southampton to become the National Oceanography Centre.
Modest Professor Woodworth, 61, said: “I don’t know who nominated me and I will be interested to see the citation to find out. It’s good for the lab and we’ve had quite a range of people in the centre who have been given honours in the past.”
The Rev Fletcher received her MBE for services to the community in Thurstaston and Irby.
Wendie Darlington, 61, has been involved with Claire House since it was founded.
The mum-of-three from Burton said: “I am thrilled that they have recognised the hard work volunteers do. I never expected to be named.”
Born in Huddersfield, Mr Cooper started his career as a teacher before joining Wirral Council as a senior education inspector in 1990.
After returning to the council following another spell in teaching, he was appointed Director of the-then Education and Cultural Services Department in 2003, In 2006 became Director of Children's Services on Wirral.
Leader of Wirral Council, Cllr Jeff Green said: ‘I have known and worked with Howard for more than 20 years and I am delighted that his commitment to children’s safety and ensuring that young people achieve their full potential has been recognised with this honour.” THE WIRRAL NEWS