Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting COUNTY GAZETTE to 80360 or email us
Watchet special constable receives MBE presented by Prince William
A SPECIAL constable from Watchet was the proud recipient of an MBE presented to him by Prince William.
Simon Bale, 41 received the prestigious medal for his voluntary work in the police control room and on the beat in the Williton and Minehead area over the past 22 years.
He was awarded the MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in June for his contribution to community policing.
Simon said the experience was surreal but wonderful.
He said: “It was a once-in-a-lifetime experience and I was glad that my wife Katrina and my children, Amelia and Thomas were able to share the event with me.
“To meet and speak to the future king on his very first investiture ceremony was a special occasion.”
It wasn’t announced until that morning that Prince William would be presenting the medals and Simon said this added to the excitement of the day.
He added: “Everyone got to have a little chat with him when they received their medals and he was quite inquisitive.
“He asked me what my award was for and he was very interested in the coastguard aspect of my work based on his close working and understanding as a RAF search and rescue pilot.
“We were only chatting for what can’t have been more than a minute but it felt like ages.”
Simon joined the special constabulary more than 20 years ago at the age of 19 working primarily out of Williton and Minehead where he was born and grew up.
He is also a member of the HM Coastguard rescue team at Watchet and volunteers with the 1st Watchet Sea Scout Group.
Simon was able to speak to some of the other deserving recipients including Andy Murray and Aled Jones, after the ceremony last Thursday.
This isn’t Simon’s first award; he was named the force’s special constable of the year in 2009 and has a good conduct service medal for more than two decade’s service.
Chief constable Nick Gargan said: “Simon’s efforts for the Special Constabulary, the Sea Scouts and for the Watchet Coast Guard Team would each individually, be worthy of a high level of recognition.
“The fact that he has managed all three is an extraordinary achievement.”
He added: “His service to the community is an example to us all.”
Comments are closed on this article.