A self-proclaimed “universal warrior” for local people says it is a great honour to receive an MBE.

The only downside for Brian Beale is that he was unable to share this proud moment with his mother, Doris Beale, who died just 17 days before he received notification of the award.

Mr Beale, 71, of Devonshire Road, Southminster, was given the New Year’s honour in recognition for his services to local government.

See the MBS for the full story.