New Year Honours: Scout and council leaders honoured

Ann Lucas, Coventry Council Ann Lucas was appointed OBE for services to local government

A council leader and a scouting stalwart are among those listed in the Queen's New Year Honours list.

Coventry Council leader Ann Lucas, 64, has been appointed OBE for her services to local government.

Former scout leader Geoffrey Russell, 83, has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to the scouting movement.

Across Coventry and Warwickshire, 19 people are named on this year's New Year Honours list.

'Complete surprise'

Mr Russell, from Nuneaton, said he was "not sure" how he was nominated for the award, but was "honoured".

"It was a complete surprise", said the former scout leader, who joined the movement in 1947.

"I had a letter from London to say I had been accepted.

Vanessa Whitburn Vanessa Whitburn, former editor of The Archers, has been appointed the OBE for services to radio drama

"I am just waiting now to hear when I have to go and collect the honour."

Ms Lucas, Labour councillor for the Holbrook ward, took up the role of Coventry council leader in May 2013.

The director of UK National Grid, Nicholas Winser, was appointed CBE for his services to the UK energy industry.

Coventry's Jane Ashcroft, chief executive of Anchor Trust, England's largest not-for-profit provider of housing and care for older people, was also appointed CBE, for services to older people.

Brenda Sheils, principal at Solihull College, was appointed OBE for her services to further education along with and Vanessa Whitburn, former editor of BBC Radio 4's The Archers, for her services to radio drama.

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