A long-serving North Yorkshire county councillor from Embsay has been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

Shelagh Marshall, who is a Conservative councillor for Mid-Craven and North Yorkshire County Council’s Older People’s Champion, is to be awarded the OBE for services to the elderly.

She said: “Obviously, I am very, very pleased and very humbled. I’m hoping this will help my voice to be heard even more in speaking up for older people. It is the older people in North Yorkshire that have continuously inspired me to do what I can to help to improve their quality of life."

Coun Marshall formerly taught at Ilkley College and has served for eight years as a governor of Upper Wharfedale School.

She has been a member of North Yorkshire County Council for the last 24 years and during that time was portfolio holder for social services where she developed an interest in issues concerning the elderly.

She went on to develop a role as Older People’s Champion in the authority and has been involved nationally in the campaign to end loneliness for older people.

She learned of her OBE soon after returning from a Buckingham Palace Garden Party for the Red Cross, where she was introduced to Prince Charles.

She said: "It was a super day and it was the first time I had met royalty, so to learn of the OBE made it extra special.

"But this is all about helping me to speak for older people. They are an inspiration."

County Councillor John Weighell, North Yorkshire’s Leader said: “Shelagh is a long-standing, hard working and highly valued member of this authority and has done much to highlight issues around older people.”

On a national level, Coun Marshall currently leads and chairs the Isolation and Loneliness Working Group of the Age Action Alliance.