Honour for magistrate from Downham Market

PUBLISHED: 09:41 10 February 2017 | UPDATED: 11:16 10 February 2017

Retired magistrate Richard Guy from Downham Market has been made an OBE. Picture: Ian Burt

Retired magistrate Richard Guy from Downham Market has been made an OBE. Picture: Ian Burt

Archant 2017

A magistrate from Downham Market will be given an OBE for his work in justice, mental health support and the community in Cambridgeshire.

Richard Guy, 64, was first involved in the justice system with the probation service in London for a short period before working as a community service supervisor in Cambridge.

He retired from work due to a disability in 2002 but continues to work as a magistrate since 1983. During that time he had been chairman of two parish charities - Waterbeach United Charities and the Turbary Charity.

As part of his work within the justice system, he offered his expertise in tribunal work for several secure psychiatric hospitals. He met with a group of lay people and heard evidence from doctors and social workers to determine whether a patient was well enough to be released and returned to the community.

He said: “I have been involved with the Justice Service in Cambridge and more recently in the larger Cambridgeshire area for over 34 years, serving on a wide range of court panels and specialising more recently in domestic violence courts.”

Mr Guy will receive the OBE on March 2, for all of his contributions whilst suffering himself from a disabling and random disorder which triggers sudden seizures and involuntary body movements.

“Over these years and even earlier I have seen the complexities and distresses of personal situations,” he said.

“This experience, alongside my own long term struggle, has helped provide useful insight during my court work and the tribunal work at specialist mental health hospitals.”

Mr Guy now supports local causes by way of financial assistance, more recently for the Community Service Volunteers in Downham Market, to allow service users with learning difficulties to enjoy a Christmas party.

“It’s an amazing honour to be made an OBE, it’s an opportunity to say to people with disabilities that we have something to offer.” He added.

“Every disability can get in the way of our lives and we have to stand up to scrutiny for our lives, and that is what I have tried to do all my life.”

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