A FORMER marine who has dedicated his life to alter perceptions of the disabled has been honoured at the House of Lords for his work.
Blythe Bridge and District Rotarian Martin Kettrick has been honoured with Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland’s Champions of Change award.
Rotarian Kettrick, of Rawle Close, Cheadle, who is an ex Royal Marine, was chosen to receive the award for the work he has done to improve the way disabled people are treated both by the authorities and general public.
In addition to supporting limbless veterans with their rehab and reintegration into society, he visits schools speaking about his life, demonstrating that, despite apparent disadvantages, young people can achieve many things.
Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson was there to support and congratulate Mr Kettrick when he joined 10 other previously unsung Rotary heroes to receive his award at a ceremony hosted by Deputy Speaker of the House of Lords, Baroness Harris of Richmond.
Baroness Harris said: “The reputation of Rotary goes before you with your extraordinary work and we are very privileged to have you here in the Palace of Westminster.”
Former Secretary of State and Leader of the House of Commons, Lord Hague of Richmond, congratulated each recipient in presenting the awards.
He said: “Rotarians should be extremely proud of their work.
“Having met the previous week with Bill Gates I was aware of the work the Foundation did with Rotary to help towards the eradication of polio.
“Together you have contributed more to the health of the people of the world than many nations.”
Nominations for the awards were in two categories, domestic and international, and were invited from across Rotary’s 26 districts, which take in 1,800 clubs and 50,000 members.
Winners’ projects ranged from supporting communities in disaster struck Nepal to challenging the way the disabled are treated by British authorities.
President of Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland Eve Conway, who has been championing polio funding-raising during her year, thanked the Rotarians for all they had done to boost the End Game and praised the Awardees for their work within the Rotary organisation.
This award comes five months after Mr Ketterick was awarded a British Empire Medal for services to charitable fund-raising.
Mr Ketterick was announced in The Queen’s Birthday Honours in June and attended a special ceremony hosted by the Chairman of Staffordshire County Council at County Buildings in Stafford on Thursday, November 17.
Rotarian Martin Kettrick receives his award from Lord Hague and RotaryGBI President Eve Conway. Credit: Chris Woods Photography, London