Worker who quit Britain for Spain awarded MBE for his charity work

Richard being applauded on receiving his MBE by the British ambassador to Spain, Simon Manley.
Richard being applauded on receiving his MBE by the British ambassador to Spain, Simon Manley.

An expatriate from Wakefield who went looking for adventures in Spain when he was younger has received an MBE for his charity work.

Richard Garland was recently presented with the medal by Britain’s ambassador to Spain.

The 65-year-old became a member of ‘Help’ a charity that looks after Britons living abroad who have fallen on hard times.

He has worked for the cause for 25 years, working his way up from working one morning a week, to driving, interpreting and eventually becoming office manager. He finally became association secretary in 2006.

Richard, who attended Cathedral School as a youngster, explained: “When I left school I started work as a civil servant and worked in Crown House in Kirkgate.

“After a few years I decided that I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life working as a civil servant so decided to head off on an adventure to Spain.

“I had no plans on what I would do there.

“I settled on the Costa Blanca near Alicante.

“For the first year I was lazy and spent a lot of time on the beach, but as with all things this couldn’t last so I decided to look around for something to do.”

Speaking about his award, he said; “As you can imagine, I was very surprised and indeed very honoured. It is the first time it had ever been given to someone in our charity.

Pictured is Richard being applauded on receiving his MBE by the British ambassador to Spain, Simon Manley.