FORMER Bromsgrove District council chairman and civic head and much-loved community champion Janice Boswell has been awarded the MBE in HM The Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
She received the accolade for voluntary service and services to the Bromsgrove community.
Janice told The Standard: “I couldn’t believe it when the letter came – I am absolutely delighted and overwhelmed.”
The 74-year-old spent 15 years on Bromsgrove District Council, representing the Furlongs ward after being elected in 2000.
In her years as civic head, she was famous for her ‘three cheers’ when attending official openings, launches or celebrations.
During her time, she helped launch the choir at Bromsgrove’s Life After Stroke Centre and started the civic head’s tea dance which still takes place each month at the Parkside Suite.
Over the years she has helped numerous charities, raising thousands of pounds. Among them have been The Edward’s Trust, The Primrose Hospice and The Stroke Association which she had as her chosen causes in her year as Bromsgrove Civic Head.
Away from politics, Janice has always given her time freely and has volunteered for community causes for 67 years.
It began when she was a girl and her grandmother had a stroke. She always visited her and helped her mum look after her.
Then when her cousin suffered with Hodgkins disease, she wrote to her every day while she was in hospital and visited her each week. She used the skills she acquired as a hairdresser to cut and style patients’ hair.
After standing down from Bromsgrove District Council she became a parish councillor and continued her voluntary and charity work, including at Bromsgrove’s Life After Stroke Centre.
Janice lives in Belbroughton with her husband Ian. The pair got married in 1969 at Oldbury Parish Church and had their reception at the Worcestershire Hotel in Droitwich. They went on to have a daughter Kate.
Janice added: “I have absolutely loved everything I have done – the charity work, the volunteering and being a councillor because I love people and good causes.
“The more people I met, the more I enjoyed it.
“You get a real buzz when you can help change people’s lives for the better.
“Everyone has been so appreciative and to be awarded an MBE by HM The Queen really is the icing on the cake.”