TV legend Bob Warman shocked and grateful at Platinum Jubilee Honour

A legend of broadcasting has spoken of the privilege and honour of being awarded Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Bob Warman has been awarded an MBE for services to journalism and broadcasting
Bob Warman has been awarded an MBE for services to journalism and broadcasting

Bob Warman has been awarded an MBE for services to broadcasting and journalism in the West Midlands after a stellar career lasting nearly 50 years.

The 75-year-old is one of the longest standing television presenters in the world, having presented ITV Central News for 49 years. He will retire in July.

He is a long-standing patron of Acorns Hospice and a founding member of the committee which established the Princess Royal Trust for carers in the Midlands.

He said he was extremely grateful to be awarded the MBE for something he said he never felt was a proper job.

He said: "I'm very honoured to receive this award and more than a little grateful to the people who added their names to my nomination, which I was shocked to find out about in the first place.

"Being a broadcaster for as many years as I have, it has brought me into contact with a lot of people and things I've been able to do and been pleased to do if it can help the charities, so it's been a privilege."

Mr Warman started as a local newspaper reporter with the Walsall Observer and the Birmingham Post and Mail in the 1960s, then started broadcasting as a radio journalist on Radio Birmingham before joining Central's predecessor ATV in 1973.

He has covered every type of story from the Birmingham pub bombings and closure of the world famous Longbridge car works to fronting up charity marathons.

His achievements include being awarded the Baird Medal, The Royal Television Society’s highest honour in recognition of “his outstanding contribution to the Midlands television community”.

He is also President of the Birmingham Press Club, a Life Vice President of the Journalists’ Charity and is also a patron of Acorns Children’s Hospice.

He said that the MBE was something that recognised not just the work he did, but also the work of everyone he had worked with over the years.

He said: "For me, this honour recognises not just the work of all my television colleagues and those in the wider press, but also those I've supported through the Birmingham Press Club, Acorns and the other charities I've worked with.

"It's also a lovely acknowledgement of my time in the business as I can't pretend it's been hard work because I have enjoyed every single minute of it and it's been an honour to do something I've enjoyed very much.

"It's never been what I call a proper job, but has been a very enjoyable working life, with this being the icing on the cake, to be honoured for something which I've enjoyed doing so much."

Karen Trainer MBE outside the Big Venture Centre

Meanwhile, the manager of a community centre who has helped countless residents has said their appreciation is worth as much as her new MBE.

Karen Trainer helped launch the Big Venture Centre, The Scotlands, over five years ago when her and a group of volunteers got control of the building which is now its home.

The 61-year-old told the Express & Star: “I was really shocked to get an MBE, I had no idea about the whole thing.

“I am happy for me but this is an honour for the centre, and everyone who volunteers here and those people who come through our doors.

“Everyone at the centre is really pleased about this, and I am so grateful to all my volunteers.”

“I always say we are a family here and when people come in crying and worried but leave with a smile on their face, that is the best recognition of the work we do.”

She added: “Our biggest achievement was getting control of the building but we help people who need support every day, the people who volunteer are very special.

“Our latest achievement has been setting up a successful community shop which helps local families.”

The Big Venture Centre has its own radio station, tranquillity garden, café, a befriending service for the elderly, help for victims of domestic violence, gives advice on money management and during the pandemic centre volunteers delivered meals and activity packs to families in need.

The Cabinet Office praised the centre for helping countless people during the pandemic

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