Queen's birthday honours: Lancashire Army quartet all named on list

Two British Army officers based at Fulwood Barracks in Preston, an army chef and a Royal Navy veteran are among the names on the Queen's Birthday Honours List

Left to Right: Silver Commander Greater Manchester Police Superintendent Donna Allen, Prime Minister Theresa May, Gold Commander Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Ian Hopkins, and Lieutenant Colonel Ray Carolin after the Manchester Arena attack.
Left to Right: Silver Commander Greater Manchester Police Superintendent Donna Allen, Prime Minister Theresa May, Gold Commander Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Ian Hopkins, and Lieutenant Colonel Ray Carolin after the Manchester Arena attack.

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Lt Colonel Carolin has been the Joint Regional Liaison Officer at the Headquarters Army North West, based at Fulwood Barracks since 2005 acting as the link between the Army and all the emergency services.

During that time he has had to look after numerous political party conferences, industrial action by the Fire Brigade in 2012 and the Ambulance Service in 2014. He also attended the Olympics in London in 2012.

Picture: Sgt Paul Morrison, RLC MOD/Crown Copyright WO2 Andy Halliday officiates at the 2016 FA Cup Final at Wembley between Crystal Palace and Manchester United.

His first taste of disasters came with the floods in Carlisle in his first year in office then the Cumbrian floods in 2009 and again throughout Cumbria and Lancashire in 2015.

Lt. Col. Carolin was also deeply involved following the Manchester Arena attack in May last year and again with the heavy snow disruption in the north west in March of this year.

He said six months serving in the Green Zone in the Iraqi capital Baghdad had prepared him well for his post as had tours in Northern Ireland, Germany and Canada after he was commissioned into the Royal Army Education Corps from Sandhurst in 1982.

He said: “When my Commander told me about the award I was initially very shocked but then extremely proud and pleased. But I also think the award is a reflection on the Headquarters team in helping civilian communities for planning and responding to emergency situations.”

Liam and mum Sue at Buckingham Palace

He added: “Now my wife, Stephanie, and my daughter, Hannah, are also extremely excited and pleased that this will mark the end of my 36-year career in such a special way and both are now shopping for new dresses and hats for our day at the Palace.”

The long and illustrious career of the only British Army’s only Premiership referee has also been rewarded with a top honour in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

Warrant Officer Class 1 (WO1) Andy Halliday, 52, who has played coached and officiated in many sports, but particularly football has been awarded an MBE for being an outstanding ambassador for the Armed Forces.

WO1 Halliday, who is the Quartermaster Sergeant Instructor for personal development at Headquarters Army North West, in Preston, went on his first refereeing course in Germany in 1994 but is now unique as the only member of the Armed Forces to have reached Level O status officiating as a referee and referee’s assistant in the Premiership, FA Cup and European matches.

For a decade he has been the chief instructor for referees’ courses but his real claim to fame is his work in the Premier League where he has run the line for 13 seasons clocking up a total of 313 matches.

WO1 Halliday said he had two highlights from his career: running the line at the 2015 FA Cup Final between Manchester United and Crystal Palace and running the line at the last home game at Old Trafford for Sir Alex Ferguson between Manchester United and Swansea.

He said: “I was absolutely speechless, and that’s not like, me when I was told about the honour but extremely touched when I thought about all the people who have helped me throughout both my football and Army career.

“Everybody, including my family, have been so tolerant of me being away almost every weekend for more than two decades. It has had a huge impact on my social life as I have never been able to plan anything at weekends. But this honour truly caps what has been a great career in football,”

WO1 Halliday said time was beginning to catch up with him but he still hoped to complete a couple more seasons in the Premier League before hanging up his boots but hoped to pursue a less inactive role with the Virtual Assistant Referee (VAR) technology that was coming into the game.

Awarded winning chef Liam Grime, from Garstang, has now received his MBE in the military section from the Queen which he gained in the New Year’s honours.

He attended Buckingham Balace earlier this month to be officially awarded the honour for his efforts in representing the military in the catering field.

The 30-year-old said: “It is a massive honour to be awarded something like that and to be recognised.

“I don’t think I have gone further beyond what I should have done. I feel like I am being awarded just for doing my job.”

Other recipients include Navy veteran Frank McKnight, from Thornton, who has been awarded a BEM for his voluntary services to armed Forces charity SSAFA.

The 63-year-old has been an integral part of the SSAFA Lancashire branch since 1995 as a volunteer caseworker and member of the IT user group, where he helped move the branch from paper-based to computer-based systems.

Over his 21 years of service to SSAFA, Frank has taken on new roles within the branch. In 1998, he became a division treasurer before being appointed as branch treasurer for the whole of Lancashire in 2009.

His work in SSAFA financial management, led to him being appointed on the National SSAFA Volunteer Advisory Committee in 2012. As part of his role, he is responsible for shaping decisions to support the work of all those involved in SSAFA caseworker activities.

In addition to his volunteering role for SSAFA, Frank is also Governor of RNLI and was a member of the finance committee for the Fleetwood lifeboat and has raised funds for World Vision and Galloway’s Society for the Blind.

Kirsty Bushell, national vice chairman of SSAFA, said: “On behalf of everyone at SSAFA, I would like to congratulate Frank on being awarded the British Empire Medal. Frank works tirelessly and his contribution to SSAFA over the past 21 years is greatly appreciated.

“Frank is outstanding in all his activities: kind, compassionate and understanding with those in need and meticulous in financial matters.

“We are absolutely delighted that Frank’s hard work has been recognised by Her Majesty The Queen, who we are extremely proud to have as the Patron of SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity. It is hugely well deserved.”