John French MBE


On the 20th February of this year (2002) John French received his M.B.E. from The Prince of Wales at the Investure in Buckingham Palace, "For services to the Community of Barton-upon-Humber, Lincolnshire".
When approached to provide information for an article for the Bartonian regarding his Award, John was his usual modest self and could not understand why such an article was needed!!
I did however get a quote from him, "I was proudto receive the M.B.E. at Buckingham Palace as a representative of Barton-upon-Humber. It was overwhelming to be recognised in the New Year Honours List; I am even more overcome at all the messages of endorsement I have received. Barton is a lovely town, and I am delighted that it is thought I might have been of some use; this is reward enough. I thank all my friends and family, including those who are now not with us, for their example, support and couragement. It is on their behalf that I accept the honour."

John a Barton man born and bred, has been a member of Barton Civic Society for 30 years, serving as chairman for many years and now vice-president.
He started his wroking life at Barton Urban District Council in 1964 as an environmental health officer after attending Castledyke Primary School and Caistor Grammar School. John worked in local government for over 30 years, and was a member of Barton Town Council for seven years.
John is now retired, but keeps himself busy with his work for the Civic Society, which has involved clearing up unsightly areas in the town, and planting trees and shrubs to improve the townscape, as well as attending meetings. John also works hard for the Church, where he has undertaken positions of Churchwarden, Secretary of the Parochial Church Council, and Chairman of the St Mary's Men's Society. He was part of the team of bell ringers until he sustained broken ribs.
John was instrumental in bringing English Heritage experts to examine 51 Fleetgate, ensuring that it was acquired by the Glanford Building Preservation Trust, and renovated with aid of grants from English Heritage. An amateur historian, John also studied the early history of a group of Victorian buildings in the town centre, as a result he was a founder member of the Queen Street School Preservation Trust.
John is also involved in encouraging tourism, and spends a lot of time acting as a guide, showing parties of visitors round the towm, and telling them about it's history.

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2002 Dazxtm