knighthoodMembers from across the full range of the fire sector have been  recognised for their work in the Queen’s New Year Honours List.

Former CFOA President Lee Howell, the chief of Devon & Somerset, and current Vice-President Peter Dartford (Staffs CFO) were among those to receive the Queen's Fire Service Medal while Sergio Parody, a divisional officer for Gibraltar City Fire Brigade, was awarded the Overseas Territories Police and Fire Service Medal for Meritorious Service.

Commenting on the awards, secretary of state Eric Pickles said: "Congratulations and well done to colleagues in local government, housing, fire and community services on the New Year’s Honours List. It’s testament to their services to the local community that their hard work, dedication and achievements have been recognised in this way."

Voluntary contributions to the service were also rewarded with GMFRS watch manager Michael Dillon receiving a BEM (British Empire Medal) for helping transform the lives of several young people in the area since helping found Moss Side Fire Station Boxing Gym in 2008.

After receiving his honour, WM Dillon said: "I am absolutely thrilled to receive this honour. I love and am deeply passionate about the work we all do at the boxing club.

"When I joined the fire service 29 years ago the expectation on us was that you put fires out and rescued people. Over the years the role of a firefighter has changed and now we're responsible for preventing fires, identifying risks and being proactive in making a difference to people's lives. To me that is what being a firefighter is all about."

The full list of FRS New Year's Honours recipients was as follows:

Awarded the Queen’s Fire Service Medal (QFSM)
Peter Dartford, Chief Fire Officer, Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service and Vice-President, Chief Fire Officers Association
Lee Howell, Chief Fire Officer, Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service
Frank Swann, Chief Fire Officer, Nottinghamshire Fire & Rescue Service
John Hindmarch, Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Tyne & Wear Fire & Rescue Service (Retired)
Simon Pilling, Chief Fire Officer, West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service
Christopher Kenny, Chief Fire Officer, Lancashire Fire & Rescue Service
(Thomas) Kevin Blair, Retained Watch Manager, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service
David Farries, Watch Manager, Scottish Fire and Rescue Service

Awarded the Overseas Territories Police and Fire Service Medal for Meritorious Service
Sergio Parody, Divisional Fire Officer Gibraltar City Fire Brigade
Awarded the Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE)
Neal Kenneth Pickersgill, Watch Manager, Urban Search and Rescue Team, Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service, for services to Search and Rescue in the UK and abroad.
Christopher Martin, Commander (Retained) Lydney Station, for services to Fire and Rescue.

Awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM)
Michael John Houghton, for services to the Fire and Rescue Service and the community in Tetbury, Gloucestershire.
Michael Gerard Dillon, for voluntary service to Young People in Greater Manchester through the Moss Side Fire Station Boxing Club.