A 90-year-old volunteer who has set up clubs for the community in north Wales has been given the rare honour of having his MBE awarded near his home.
Instead of Buckingham Palace, Syd Badland, from Trefnant near Rhuddlan, received his medal at the local community centre.
He declined an invitation from the Queen because his disability prevented him going to London.
He was honoured for his voluntary work in the New Year's honours.
Lord-Lieutenant of Clwyd, Trefor Jones, presented Mr Badland's insignia during an open day for the Positive Action for Strokes support group, which was co-founded by the pensioner and holds weekly meetings at the Rhuddlan centre.
"People said it was about time I was given the MBE but it never occurred to me at all," said Mr Badland.
"I said I just wanted it to be low-key, but we were greeted with champagne and a buffet and around 80 people came to the centre.
"I found it very emotional, people said such nice things about how I had helped them".
Mr Badland has had a lifetime of volunteering.
After six years in the Royal Navy, he was appointed as senior nurse at the former North Wales Hospital, Denbigh, in 1957.
He became a member of the hospital board and the Mental Health Act Commission when he retired.
An active member of his local community, Mr Badland, who had a stroke when he was 86, co-founded the Gateway Club for the mentally handicapped and the Citizens Advice Bureau in Denbigh.
He also helped establish Denbigh Boxing Club and is a member of the Rotary Club and Clwyd Angling Club.