A train driver and magistrate will today receive an MBE for the Queen as his decades of service are recognised.
John Scott, from Cleadon Village, has worked as a train driver for the last 38 years, and has also held the post of chairman of the Gateshead and Newcastle branch of ASLEF – the Train Drivers’ Union – in the past.
I consider the award of the MBE as a great honour, not only for me, but for my fellow magistrates, who are the unsung heroes of the criminal justice systemJohn Scott MBE
He was instrumental in setting up the North Eastern Railway Staff Welfare Association in 1984, which caters for the needs of all rail staff, and currently drives trains to London Kings Cross and Edinburgh from Newcastle.
In 1988, he was appointed as the youngest-ever justice of the peace to the Sunderland bench, and he has held a number of posts over the years, including chairman of the City of Sunderland bench.
He is currently serving as the first chairman of the new South Northumbria bench following the merger of the South Tyneside, Gateshead and City of Sunderland benches, with just over 250 magistrates serving the enlarged new local justice area.
Mr Scott sees the MBE – which he will receive at the Palace of Holyroodhouse, in Edinburgh – as recognition for magistrates across the country.
He said: “I consider the award of the MBE as a great honour, not only for me, but for my fellow magistrates, who are the unsung heroes of the criminal justice system.
“As a body of unpaid volunteers, magistrates have been serving this country selflessly since 1361. I don’t think that we receive enough recognition for what we do, so I see this as an award for all of us. I’ve been really looking forward to receiving the MBE. Edinburgh is one of my favourite cities, and I have Scottish heritage, so it’s a perfect location for it.”