A GOLFER who has taught football throughout the area has been awarded the British Empire Medal.

Des Williams, seniors captain of the Wrag Barn Golf Club in Highworth, was presented with the award in recognition of his work in local sport.

The 68-year-old retired maths teacher spent 40 years dedicated to football in the Shrivenham area and was delighted to receive the award.

He said: “It is just nice to know people recognise what I have done helping youngsters locally.

“We went up to Buckingham Palace and it was a lovely day.

“I am not married so I took my goddaughter and she was goggle-eyed for most of the day.

“There were about 8,000 people there including Prince Philip and the Queen and Kate and Anne and a handful of other the high profile Royals.

“I didn’t get to speak to any of them but I think they picked a select few to talk to but they were pretty close to us.”

Des, who founded the Vale of the White Horse Schools FA in 1976, was instrumental through the area with teaching youngsters football and has been running the association ever since as secretary, treasurer and manager.

He said: “I was awarded the BEM for more contribution to local sport in the local area for the past 40 years, for football mainly but cricket as well.

“I was secretary of Letcombe FC and began running what was then the North Berks Schools FA, but when the county boundaries changed it ceased to exist so I set up the Vale of the White Horse FA.

“Boys from all over the Shrivenham and Faringdon area took part in that.

“I was very proud of the fact that the Vale of White Horse were National champions two years ago in 2012, beating Newcastle in the final of the under 15 inter-association trophy at the KC stadium , Hull on penalties after a 1-1 draw."