Queen’s honours for Deeside

Jenny Gow says her MBE is a reflection on the team of volunteers
Jenny Gow says her MBE is a reflection on the team of volunteers

Deeside has been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Recipients were among men and women from all walks of life honoured throughout Aberdeenshire.

Ballater charity stalwart Jenny Gow, founder of A Bear Called Buttony, was made an MBE.

Jenny received the accolade for her services to charitable causes in the region, including the Archie Foundation.

The mother-of-two has led a campaign with a team of volunteers to make special teddy bears for children undergoing complex surgery.

A Bear Called Buttony was inspired by her elder daughter Eilidh, now 21, who had stoma surgery when she was three.

Jenny, 48, said: “I couldn’t believe it when I received the letter.

“The honour is a reflection on all the volunteers and people who have helped over the years.

“We have donated 2352 bears since May, 2015. It’s very much a team effort.

“Raising awareness is really important to us as anyone can be affected by this.”

Eilidh made a video on the project which won Best Documentary and Best Film in the 2017 Scottish Youth Film Festival and was screened at more than 15 festivals around the world.

Also made an MBE was Christine Sloan, founder of Crathie Opportunity Holidays, which provides disabled-friendly holiday cottages.

She received the award for services to people with disabilities and tourism.

Christine said: “I was surprised to be honoured in this way for what is an amazing achievement for the local Deeside community.

“I think this honour is as much for the local people who have given so much support and encouragement to the project.”

An MBE also went to Angus Maitland Pelham Burn, of Aboyne, for services to the community in Aberdeenshire.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon paid tribute to more than 100 Scottish recipients.

She said: “The Scots recognised in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours have made exceptional contributions to communities the length and breadth of the country.

“Their service and dedication in fields ranging from the arts, education and sport to business, charity, community cohesion and science has helped to promote Scotland all over the world, and benefited people throughout society.”