A Debenham man who has been made an OBE for public and voluntary service in Suffolk enjoyed more good news just days later - after becoming a great-grandfather for the first time.
Eddy Alcock, of Debenham, was listed on the Queen’s Birthday Honours list to become an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE), on Saturday, June 14.
And just days later on Tuesday, June 17, his eldest grandchild, Annabel, 23, gave birth to Felix George Osborn, making the 76-year-old a great grandfather for the first time.
Although he is yet to meet the newest addition to the family, young Felix is reported to be “doing fine.”
On being made an OBE, Mr Alcock told the Diss Express: “I was pleasantly surprised. We never do the things we do to get recognition. It is a great honour to have the award.
“The one thing people say to me is that these things come in threes - what’s the third thing going to be?”
Mr Alcock says his greatest achievements include his role in raising much of the £1.25 million for the sports hall and various sporting facilities at Debenham Leisure Centre between 1988 and 2003, and his work with Suffolk Young Enterprise, which spans 15 years, both as a business adviser and more latterly as chairman of the Suffolk Board.
Mr Alcock was elected to Mid Suffolk District Council in 1981, and again in 2003, while he was elected to Suffolk County Council. He was chairman of the council in 2010/11.
Born in Ipswich, he went to Ipswich School before starting an apprenticeship at Ransomes and Rapier. He remained at the company for 18 years.
After working for various companies in sales after leaving, he moved to the village of Debenham in 1973 a year after a tragic road accident which killed his wife, Ann. With work taking him across the world, he moved to the village and after a few years became a shopkeeper in the village, enabling him to see much more of son, David, now 45, who was being looked after by in-laws following the accident.
He was a retained firefighter in Debenham between 1975 and 1985, and in 1980 became the Retained Firefighters Union (RFU) national president.
He has been active in the village, with involvement in the parish council, the Debenham Local Drug Action Group, Debenham Community Coordinating Committee, Debenham Youth Club Support Group, the Debenham Parish Church Art Exhibition, and a four-year stint as a governor at the primary school. He has also been a board member of the Suffolk Board of the Princes Trust.
“I came here, in a sense, through misfortune, but I found it was one of the most all-embracing and inviting communities imaginable, so had no difficulty integrating.
“What I did (voluntary work) was welcomed so I carried on doing it. I would not want to live anywhere else.”