JUDITH Evans met the Queen last Wednesday to be invested with her MBE – and then celebrated by having lunch with her family at Burger King. Mrs Evans, 52, from Needingworth, was awarded the MBE in the New Year honours for her services to young people. Sh
JUDITH Evans met the Queen last Wednesday to be invested with her MBE - and then celebrated by having lunch with her family at Burger King.
Mrs Evans, 52, from Needingworth, was awarded the MBE in the New Year honours for her services to young people.
She has been involved with youth work for 30 years, since being persuaded by a friend to teach ballroom and Latin dancing to teenagers at a St Ives youth club. She has since given motorcycling instruction to young people in St Neots and is a qualified examiner for part one of the motorcycle test.
Mrs Evans taught at Holywell Primary School, helped with cycling proficiency lessons and ran Guides in the village for 14 years. For the past six years she has been involved with 14-25-year-old St Ives Ranger Guides, has qualified as a lifeguard and also offers archery instruction. Before the village was bypassed she was a lollipop lady for Needingworth High Street.
Her trip to Buckingham Palace was a "wonderful day" she said. "I was given a 20-minute slot to arrive there, between 10am and 10.20am. My family were shown straight up into the ballroom where the ceremony took place but the participants were shown into a gallery where we were offered a drink. We had a choice: still water or sparkling! But this was the best bit, meeting all the other people. No one knew anyone, so you had to talk. I met Professor Tavi Murray, who received the Polar Medal for her scientific work in the Arctic and Antarctic."
And it was meeting Professor Murray, from Swansea University, that left more of an impression than meeting the Queen.
"The Queen asked me which part of Cambridgeshire I came from and I said Needingworth, near St Ives - and she said 'Oh'. Then she asked 'What services have you done for young people?' and I told her and she said 'How nice'.
"Then she stuck out her hand for me to shake and then she gave me a gentle push backwards. That is the signal that your time is up."
Mrs Evans added: "There were 93 of us for the Queen to see in just over an hour but she has a lot of support. There is a little man behind her who tells who you are and why you are there after your name is announced."
When Mrs Evans, now MBE, left the palace with IT consultant, husband Chris and daughters Rebecca and Nicola, they had lunch at Burger King.
She added: "It was a wonderful day and such a privilege to meet the other people.