THE sun came out and the church bells rang to mark a very special day in Harting village on Thursday.
The Queen’s Lord Lieutenant of West Sussex, Susan Pyper, visted the village to award Harting resident, Humphrey Sladden with the British Empire Medal.
Speaking at the event at the Church of St Mary and St Gabriel in Harting, Humphrey thanked everyone for coming to share the special day.
“Today I am very excited, proud and also embarrassed. To have been given this award is a huge privilege and I do thank those kind friends who put my name forward for it,” he said.
“I have to say I am truly embarrassed because I am so conscious of the dozens and dozens of others in the village who do so much for the huge number of organisations, clubs and societies which make this such a vibrant and lively community and I regard this award as an acknowledgement of their work and constant efforts.”
Susan Pyper congratulated Humphrey as she awarded him the medal, and said it was an ‘incredible achievement’.
Humphrey’s family and friends applauded as the medal was invested.
Peter Cragg at Harting Village Stores also had a visit from the Lord Lieutenant and her deputy, who asked him about the passing trade and the history of the shop.
The British Empire Medal was revived last year for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee after it was disbanded in 1993.