A LONG-serving parish councillor has been made an honorary freeman for more than 30 years of ‘eminent service’.

At last week’s meeting of Tidenham Parish Council Roy Birch was presented with an illuminated certificate.

He told members that things were very different when he first tried to get onto the council – being told by one member, “We don’t really want outsiders here.”

Liberal Democrat Mr Birch was a parish, district and county councillor for Tidenham as well as a governor at Offa’s Mead School in Sedbury and a board member of the Two Rivers Housing Association.

Cllr Jan Koning, parish council chairman said: “If someone with that breadth and width of expertise and experience is retiring, it is difficult to fill the void.

“Because of this impressive track record and his wise contributions over all these years, Tidenham Parish Council has decided to do something very special and, on behalf of the community, say a big ‘thank you’.

“Parish councils have limited powers but one of those powers recognises that sometimes people serve their community in exemplary ways and “rendered eminent services.”