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Honorary President of Bloodwise awarded an MBE

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31 Dec 2016

Richard Delderfield has been awarded an MBE in the 2017 New Year’s Honours list.

Richard Delderfield has been awarded an MBE in the 2017 New Year’s Honours list. Richard has volunteered for Bloodwise since losing his teenage son, Paul, to leukaemia in 1985. He was awarded the MBE for services to the charity and the local community of Thorncombe, where he lived for over 10 years.

Richard was a member of our Board of Trustees for over 20 years and served as our Vice Chairman between 2007 and 2013, as well as acting as Chairman for a time.  He joined the Yeovil & District voluntary Branch of the charity in 1987 and later became the Branch’s Chairman.

Richard was raised in Essex and as a teenager he lost his mother to leukaemia when she was just 42. His son Paul was first diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia in October 1984. He had just started sixth form and was interested in pursuing a career in nature photography and film.

Richard said, “After six treatments of chemotherapy, he was fine, but the disease returned very quickly. After much persuasion, he was given the latest treatment available but lost his brave fight and passed away in August 1985. He was 17 years old.”

In 1985, months after their son’s death, Richard and his wife, Angela, joined Sir Ian Botham on his first legendary John O’Groats to Land’s End fundraising walk to beat childhood leukaemia. Richard was inspired by the cause and has joined Sir Ian on every walk since 1992 for the charity, becoming the collections organiser for the walks. Richard was also instrumental in setting up and organising many of the charity’s Bikeathon events, both locally and nationally, which have raised millions of pounds. 

Richard and Angela lived in Thorncombe between 2002 and 2013 and now live in Long Melford, Suffolk. Richard continues to fundraise and help in the charity in any way he can. 

Richard said: “I am humbled, yet proud and honoured to have been awarded an MBE in the 2017 New Year Honours list, not only for my service and dedication to the charity Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research, which is now called Bloodwise, but also for my community involvement in Thorncombe, Dorset.

“I cannot think of a more fitting way to mark my 30 years of commitment to beating blood cancer – it has been a long road, always with the memories of our dear son Paul urging me onwards – after all these years I feel that his death was not in vain.”

Diana Jupp, Acting Chief Executive of Bloodwise, said: “This award could not be more deserved. Richard has worked tirelessly for the charity over many years, helping to develop many of our flagship fundraising events. During this time, thanks to the research that these events have helped fund, the outlook for children diagnosed with leukaemia has been dramatically transformed.”