Queen honours Axminster first aider

Bryan is welcomed into the historic Order of St John

AN Axminster man has received royal recognition for his voluntary first aid work.

Bryan Ball was invested into the historic Order of St John at a prestigious ceremony at the 12th century Priory Church, in London.

The award recognises his exceptional service to the order’s key foundations – one of which is St John Ambulance, the nation’s leading first aid charity.

Because it is a Royal Order of Chivalry, each recipient must be approved by Her Majesty the Queen.


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Mr Ball has been a St John Ambulance volunteer for 37 years, during which time he has transported patients across the country as well as undertaking countless first aid duties.

He received the Order’s insignia from Rodney Green, the Prior, on behalf of The Queen.

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Afterwards he said: “I am extremely proud to have been invested into the Order of St John. Joining St John Ambulance has allowed me to use my first aid knowledge so that I could be the difference between a life lost and a life saved and I am honoured that I have been recognised in this way.

“We have dealt with many incidents from the tiniest wound, to someone suffering from a heart attack. If you’ve just had our simple training, there’s always something you can do to try and make a difference.”

Mr Green, said: “Bryan has shown dedication to helping St John Ambulance’s life-saving work. He has been invited to join the Order of St John in recognition of his dedication and the contribution he has made to his community.”

* The Order of St John is one of the world’s oldest charities and traces its origins back 900 years to the Knights Hospitaller and the first Hospital of St John in Jerusalem in 1078. Its international history is showcased in the Museum of the Order of St John in Clerkenwell, London.

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