A FOSSIL expert, a soldier, charity workers and community servants are among Dorset’s great and good named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list today.

Fossil expert Steve Etches will receive an MBE for services to palaeontology after amassing and curating more than 2,000 specimens from the Jurassic Coast over the past 30 years – a collection soon to be be housed in a new multi-million pound centre in his home village of Kimmeridge.

Twice awarded the Amateur Palaeontologist Award and held in high esteem by academics he has been described as a “national treasure” by Cambridge University Prof Simon Conway Morris.

RNLI principal Naval Engineer Dr Holly Phillips from Swanage has been awarded an MBE for services to maritime safety and the community.

Her role includes helping design lifeboats and ensuring they are safe, and she recently project managed the replacement of the lifeboats on the Thames.

Dr Phillips, 44, was a volunteer lifeboat crew member in Poole for 17 years until 2012, and started working as a naval architect for the organisation in 2002.

She is also known as a fundraiser and trustee of Swanage Sea Rowing Club.

She said: “I’m surprised and so honoured. It’s one of those things that you never think will happen to you. I really do see it as a team award for all the hard work of so many people.

"What we do here at the RNLI can’t be done alone so this is very much for them as well.”

Chris Rose, 59, who worked as a Retained Station Commander for Gillingham Fire Station for 40 years before retiring in February, was awarded an MBE for services to the community in Dorset.

He said: “I feel deeply humbled because somebody put me forward for this. I am just one of many who do the job within the town, but I take this for all the other people who deserve recognition for their work within the community. It is a great honour.”

Adam Tuffrey, 19, from Bournemouth, was awarded a British Empire Medal, for his work as a young ambassador of the Meningitis Trust and for services to meningitis awareness.

He said: “It’s really exciting but humbling and I’m really grateful to all the people who have supported me over the years.

“It’s great that we will be able to share this award with everyone at the Music 4 Meningitis concert on July 4 at the Pavilion, including my friends and family.”

Helen ‘overwhelmed’

Long-term fundraiser Helen Warren, 45, from Poole was “totally overwhelmed” to be nominated for a British Empire Medal for services to education. A committee member of Poole Grammar’s PSA, she has raised funds for the school and for others in the town.

Over 15-years she has helped raise in excess of £60,000-£70,000. “I am absolutely overwhelmed that someone thought I was deserving of this,” she said.

Vanetta Westell from Poole, who has supported the NSPCC for three decades, has been awarded the British Empire Medal.

The 78-year-old has raised funds for the past 35 years, running collections and generating at least £5,000 each year.

'A great privilege'

WIMBORNE man Philip Evason has been awarded the MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

Lieutenant Colonel Philip Evason, of the Parachute Regiment, was given the honour for his work in the Army Reserve Forces.

During his 30 years of service Philip has held a number of appointments, which included serving on operational tour, instructing at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst and Commanding a Specialist Training Group.

He is currently a Staff Officer at the Army Personnel Centre.

Philip said: “It is a great privilege to receive this award in recognition of my contribution over the years; I am absolutely delighted.

“I have had some wonderful opportunities with the Reserve Forces and I feel it is a really good way to put something back into society.

"During this time I was fortunate enough to have the support of my main employers; John Lewis, Waitrose and Marks and Spencer, enabling me to balance my full time civilian career with a fulfilling Reservist commitment.”

Philip moved to Dorset seven years ago and now advises in purchasing and supply chain management within the food and horticultural industries.