Julie Taylor, Head of Uniformed Services at Ashfield Post 16 Centre, was delighted and overwhelmed to learn that she has been awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List 2021 for ‘Services to Education and Charity’.

The award is in recognition of the great contribution Julie has made to Ashfield School students over the 14 years that she has led the Uniformed Services course there, with many going on to successful careers in the Police, Prison Service, Royal Navy, British Army and RAF amongst others. Julie said: “It is an absolute honour to be recognised in this way and I feel very humbled.  I am privileged to work with the most dedicated of staff at Ashfield School, some truly inspiring students and their supportive families. It is rewarding to see so many of our students go on to serve their country in the military and civilian services and I am grateful to have played a part in their educational journey.”

The honour is also an acknowledgement of her tireless fundraising efforts, both with her students and in her own time, always very much leading by example. Over the years, she has engaged students in fundraising activities for many different causes including Help for Heroes, Blue Lamp Foundation, Fund for Darfur, Firefighters Charity, Mary’s Meals, Operation Smile, Seeing is Believing and the list goes on…  Her personal fundraising challenges include numerous swimathons for Cancer Research and Marie Curie, and she completed the UK’s first 26.2mile open water swim raising funds for Cancer Research and Macmillan.

Julie’s former student, now a Captain in the British Army, said the following about her in his citation:

“Julie Taylor is a driven, disciplined and courageous individual who sets standards within her workplace which both her students and peers strive to achieve – whether this be running multiple charity events or taking on personal challenges in her spare time, it is through this selfless example and courage that she holds standards so high and in turn has enabled many individuals to strive to achieve.

She enables her students to feel empowered and important within a safe space to develop themselves by encouraging them to accept weakness and strive for success by development.  Quite frankly, I would not be an Army Officer today without Ms Julie Taylor.”

John Maher, Head Teacher at Ashfield, said: “Staff and Governors are proud and delighted that Julie has been recognised for her commitment to sparking ambition in the students of Ashfield School.”