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MBE for caring Alan

PUBLISHED: 17:58 18 June 2008 | UPDATED: 09:53 23 August 2010

A CHARITY volunteer is to be honoured by the Queen for working with cancer patients for more than 30 years. Alan Clark, 79, of Brent Lane, Dartford is to receive an MBE for befriending people with cancer and raising funds for Cancer Research UK for a per

A CHARITY volunteer is to be honoured by the Queen for working with cancer patients for more than 30 years.

Alan Clark, 79, of Brent Lane, Dartford is to receive an MBE for befriending people with cancer and raising funds for Cancer Research UK for a period of 36 years.

The Dartford branch, where he volunteers, is the country's most successful, raising close to £3 million since it was formed in 1956 by Jimmy Clubb senior.

Mr Clark said: "I feel proud to receive the award. When I first started, being diagnosed with cancer was a death sentence but not anymore. Over the years I've met so many wonderful people. It can be a very distressing time for families when someone is diagnosed with cancer."

He said one of the biggest heartbreaks was the tragic death of Charlotte Thredgle, aged six from Hartley.

After a brave year-long battle, she died in 1998.

Mr Clark remembers attending little Charlotte's emotional funeral service held in St. Mary's Church, Fawkham.

But he also remembers the successes, the "wonderful" feeling when a brother and sister, Paul and Anna Blacker from Fawkham Manor, overcame cancer and their families raising over £20,000 for Cancer research UK.

He said another great friend who made a miraculous recovery from the dreaded disease is Angela Clements, from Bean.

Mr Clark said: "She is one of the bravest ladies I have ever met."

Unknown to Mr Clark, it was Mrs Clements who wrote to the Queen to nominate him for an MBE. Dartford committee president Ivor Jones said: "He has worked endlessly to raise money in the fight against this disease. He would help anybody who needed it, a remarkable chap."

Other Queen's Birthday Honours recipients include Frances Hinde, former deputy headteacher of Swanley Technology College, who was awarded an MBE for services to education and vulnerable people.

Headteacher Julie Bramley said: "Her contribution to this school has been immense for over 20 years.

"She has seen the school through some turbulent times and established a wonderful rapport some vulnerable youngsters. When we told staff and pupils about her MBE on Monday there was a big cheer and a round of applause."

David Rogers, of Gravesend, won an MBE for services to the police; Thomas Butler, of Longfield for public and voluntary service, and Richard Abnett of Sevenoaks was given an OBE for services to intellectual property rights.

Dr John Williams, former head of heritage conservation at Kent County Council won an MBE for services to local government.

martin.sawden@archant.co.uk

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