Honour for St John’s Derrick

Derrick Layzell with his Officer of the Order of St John medal.

Derrick Layzell with his Officer of the Order of St John medal. - Credit: Archant

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A long serving member of St John Ambulance in Honiton has received recognition for working ‘over and above’ his duties.

Derrick Layzell was invested as an Officer of the Order of St John and presented with a medal by the Prior of the Order, Rodney Green, during a ceremony at the National St John headquarters, in London.

The 68-year-old had been involved with St John Ambulance for around 50 years - joining the organisation as a cadet when he was 12-years-old.

“It is an honour,” says Mr Layzell. “There have been good times and bad times but this is the icing on the cake.”


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Mr Layzell says he was surprised to discover his name had been put forward for the award after receiving a letter last October.

His investiture had to be sanctioned by Her Majesty the Queen as the sovereign head of the Order of St John.

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More than 70 people from all over the British Isles were invested to different grades during the ceremony. The highest grade is commander, followed by officer and then member.

Mr Layzell added: “I was the only one to attend the investiture from Devon.

“It was a very special day that I will remember. It was awarded for service to St John Ambulance as I had belonged to the organisation for 50 years, but it is not a long service medal.

“It is awarded for work over and above general duties to St John.”

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