Two Scouting stalwarts have been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.
Ray Aldous and Rita Jarman have both been awarded the MBE for services to Young People and Scouting.
Ray, now 82, has spent the past 60 years involved with the Scout movement. He first joined 7th Luton Scouts as a boy and when doing his National Service at the Suez Canal in the 50s he got involved with the Rover Scouts.
Back home he became a Scout Master and had a Bedfordshire county appointment before becoming assistant district commsioner for the Icknield district.He is still supporting the Scouts as public relations officer.
“I’m absolutely gobsmacked,” the father-of-two said of the award. “I’m absolutely over the moon as you can imagine.”
Rita, 82, also celebrates over 60 years continuous service with the Scouts.
She said: “I was amazed when I found out! You know we’re just ordinary people but we’ve been in Scouting over 60 years. It’s become a way of life for us.”
Rita first began working with the Scouts in December of 1948 aged 16, when she was appointed Cub Master.
After some time off to care for her family, she returned to the Scouts and has never looked back.
She said: “I’m not in it so often now because I don’t run a section, but I do help out when they need me!”
From 1971 until 1992, Rita was ADC Cub Scouts with the Icknield District, and afterwards became District Cub Scout Leader spending her time helping out with packs in the district that were short of leaders.