A PENSIONER who has fought against anti-social behaviour in her neighbourhood has been made an MBE in the Queen's New Year's Honours List.
Retired secretary Patricia Russell, from Paulsgrove, is one of a number of unsung heroes to be receiving an honour.
Mrs Russell set up a neighbourhood watch scheme in her street to tackle nuisance behaviour.
Ten years later and her tireless endeavour, working with the local police, has seen the anti-social behaviour disappear.
By residents working together through the Community and Police Enforcement Group - which meets in Mrs Russell's living room along with local bobbies and councillors - they have transformed the street in other ways too.
There are now dropped kerbs, new lampposts and better parking facilities.
Through the group Mrs Russell has raised thousands of pounds for good causes, including The Patey Day Centre, in Cosham, The Rocky Appeal, Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance and The Elizabeth Foundation.
The cash was raised by neighbours donating their pennies at various barbecues and firework parties.
Mrs Russell, 65, who used to work for the Inland Revenue, was not immediately contactable.
But her daughter Susan Richardson, 40, from Southampton, said: 'She will be thrilled to bits and overwhelmed by it all. It will mean an awful lot to her.
'We are very proud of her. She gives up a lot of her time to help others and she enjoys what she does.
'It's all done with the best intentions and she wants to make things better and easier for people.'
The current chairman of the residents' group Graham Cranmer, 62, said: 'The scheme has not only eradicated the nuisance, but has done lots of things for the community.
'It's well-deserved. She puts herself out to be part of this community.
'She's very adept at being able to talk to the right people and say the right things.'
Other local names on the list included the veteran actress Sheila Hancock, who hails from the Isle of Wight and is Chancellor of Portsmouth University, as well as a long and avid supporter of Portsmouth's New Theatre Royal.
She has been made a CBE for her services to drama.
She told The News: 'I was surprised to receive it, but I'm thrilled, honoured.
'I am also thrilled for the university, because any honour that anyone connected with the university gets means an honour for the university, too.'
Kathleen Rhoda Pitt has been made an MBE for her services to the community in Petersfield and Catherine Elizabeth Shaw has been made made an MBE for her services to the community in Chichester.
Elizabeth Cartwright, who is chairwoman of the Regional Housing Board and the Hampshire Alliance for Rural Affordable Housing, has been made an OBE for services to local government.
Mohammed Mossadaq, an equality adviser at Hampshire County Council, has been made an OBE for services to local government.
He said: ‘It was a shock when the letter came through the post, I wasn't expecting this at all, but it is a real privilege.'
Pensioner is made an MBE for Paulsgrove community work
by JEFF TRAVIS