New Year Honours list: Olympians amongst honourees

Ed McKeever, Heather Stanning and Laura Bechtolsheimer
Image caption Ed McKeever, Heather Stanning and Laura Bechtolsheimer all won gold medals

Three Wiltshire Olympians have been recognised in the New Year's Honours list.

Canoeist Ed McKeever, from Bradford on Avon, has been appointed MBE in recognition of his gold medal in the kayak sprint.

Army captain Heather Stanning, who is based at Larkhill and won Team GB's first gold of the Games, in the woman's pairs rowing, is also appointed MBE.

Dressage champion Laura Bechtolsheimer, of Malmesbury, is also recognised.

McKeever is currently away on his honeymoon but his father said his son was "delighted and proud".

'Real surprise'

Away from the Olympics, Steve Visscher, deputy chief executive and chief operating officer of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), has been appointed CBE for services to scientific research.

Image caption Steve Visscher said the honour also reflected the work his colleagues do

Mr Visscher, from Marlborough, said it was a "real surprise" and something "which had come out of the blue".

"For me personally it's a great honour and it spurs me on to do more to tackle some of the big challenges that we face," he said.

BBSRC helps to fund research into biosciences and bio-energy as well as research into food security so that future generations have sufficient, nutritious food.

Mr Visscher added that the honour also reflected the work his colleagues do, and the support they give him.

Other people from Wiltshire who have been recognised include Daphne Pullen, from Warminster. She is the chair of CLIC Sargent and has been appointed OBE for her charitable services.

Other people who have been appointed MBE include Jillian Clarke for her services to the community in Sutton Benger; David Edgington for his work for the industrial heritage of the stationary engine and Lady Judy Martin, who is the director of the Young Persons Concert Foundation.

Also appointed MBE is special constable John Tupman for services to policing and to the community in Marlborough.