A MALDON historian has spoken of his pride after becoming the first recipient of prestigious award in more than 100 years.

Town councillor, former town mayor and Standard columnist Stephen Nunn was handed the honorary Freedom of the Town award at Maldon Town Council’s annual town meeting last week.

Mr Nunn, who writes weekly history columns for the Standard , was recognised for his services to the town’s history.

It is understood the award was last presented in 1903 to Maldon soldiers who had served in the South African and Boer wars.

The award is decided by and voted on by the town council.

Mr Nunn said: “I didn’t know about this until about two weeks ago — though apparently my wife did.

“I was awarded it for services to local history – to Maldon’s history — and we think it is the first time it has been done since 1903.

“The last time it was awarded to soldiers from Maldon who had fought in the South African and Boer Wars.

“I feel hugely privileged to be awarded it.

“It is part of the evolving history of the town — I am part of that history now.

“It is a bit like the town’s version of the Queen’s birthday honours.

“It doesn’t entitle me to anything and it can’t be inherited.

“Next to being mayor it has to be the greatest privilege I have had.

“I am really pleased about it and I think I am still a bit shocked.

“I am humbled I have been chosen when there are so many other people who have done great things.”

Mr Nunn, of Fambridge Road, Maldon, was presented the award by town mayor Richard Miller at the meeting last Tuesday.