The father of a police officer tragically murdered while on duty nearly 11 years ago has collected an MBE for his ongoing charity work.
On a day that will forever be devastatingly etched into the memory of Greater Manchester – 18 September 2012 – Greater Manchester Police (GMP) officers PC Nicola Hughes and PC Fiona Bone were on patrol and responding to hoax reports of a burglary at Abbey Gardens in the village of Mottram in Longdendale in Tameside when they were murdered in a gun and grenade ambush.
The hoax reports were a result of a 999 emergency telephone call from a member of the public – which was later found to be the work of wanted man Dale Cregan, who had led the officers into a trap.
PC Bone was pronounced dead at the scene, and PC Hughes later died in hospital.
The horrific incident was the first in Great Britain where two female police officers were killed on duty, and their tragic deaths were met with nationwide shock and anger.
GMP’s then Chief Constable Peter Fahy called the attack “cold-blooded murder”, and then Prime Minister David Cameron described it as a “despicable act… of pure evil”, while several memorial services and moments of silence have also been held in the pair’s honour too over the years.
While the two PCs will always be remembered by the GMP community, PC Nicola Hughes’ father was determined to make sure her legacy lived on and benefitted others on a much bigger scale, and so he decided to found the PC Nicola Hughes Memorial Fund – which works to give young people education and employment opportunities following the death of a family member through violent crime.
For his ongoing efforts to support young people who have suffered loss due to violent crime, Bryn Hughes was recognised for his “outstanding work” and made an MBE in the 2023 New Year Honours list alongside hundred of other inspirational volunteers.
And yesterday, he finally collected the prestigious honour.
Mr Hughes, from Huddersfield in West Yorkshire, was presented with his MBE by the Princess Royal during a ceremony at Buckingham Palace yesterday, the BBC reports, and told Anne that it was a day of “mixed emotion”.
Speaking back when he was awarded the honour at the beginning of the year, Mr Hughes said he initially thought it was a “wind up” that he’d been recognised, but once it’d sunk in that it was real, he knew his daughter would be “very proud” of him.
“I also think she’d be laughing,” he admitted though.
“I think she’d buy me some PJs with a medal on it or something as well. She shared my sense of humour so she’d make some fun of it.”
Featured Image – Bryn Hughes (via Twitter)