Decades of duty recognised with a BEM in Town Hall ceremony for Oxspring’s John Wade

Decades of public service from a bastion of Barnsley’s rural community have been recognised with a BEM awarded to former Councillor John Wade in a ceremony at Barnsley Town Hall.

By Paul Whitehouse
Thursday, 09 May, 2019, 15:46
Recognition: John Wade BEM with Lord Lieutenant Andrew Coombe

Mr Wade, 93, has a long history of public service which included membership of the old Penistone Rural District Council and Barnsley Council which followed after a local authority re-organisation in 1974.

But even after his council service concluded, Mr Wade, of Sheffield Road, Oxspring, remained an active figure in the community and was still serving as a school governor at the village school, which he attended as a child, until his 90s – taking his time in that role to half a century.

Mr Wade’s career was in engineering – he still part owns a vintage steam traction engine – but became involved in local politics in response to high profile local concerns, which he successfully helped to address.

He was a driving force behind resistance to plans for a new sewage treatment centre in the area, something which was amended as a result, and also in getting improvements to the water quality in the River Don which runs through the village.

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That had been adversely affected by pollution from industry.

Other credits include persuading the authorities that Oxspring needed bungalow accommodation for old people, resulting in the estate built alongside Sheffield Road.

The investiture was conducted by Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant of South Yorkshire, Andrew Coombe, who was introduced by Mayor of Barnsley Coun Steve Green.

The medal was awarded for services to Oxspring.