British Empire Medal for musical maestro

PUBLISHED: 14:00 01 July 2012

Eric Holdaway has been awarded the British Empire medal.

Eric Holdaway has been awarded the British Empire medal.

Archant

A MUSICAL maestro from Hutton has been recognised for decades of service in the community in the Queen’s honours list.

Eric Holdaway has been handed a British Empire Medal after providing years of service to Hutton and the surrounding area.

It is in the musical sphere that 62-year-old Mr Holdaway is best known, and among the more recent events he has been involved with are performances at Hutton Primary School, annual May Day celebrations and summer fetes.

Mr Holdaway, of Elmsleigh Road, initially moved to North Somerset from the South East to begin his teaching career, and has been heavily involved in music in the area ever since.

Regular appearances for classes and assemblies at both Hutton and Locking Primary School have long made him a favourite among pupils at the school.

His latest musical engagement was playing keyboard for Winscombe Youth Theatre’s production of We’re Off To Find The Wizard at Churchill Academy.

The music teacher is also the village organist, runs St Mary’s Church choir and has organised various village events.

He has also been heavily involved in Hutton’s twinning association with the Kenyan town of Dabaso, and he was one of the first villagers to visit the African country.

Since then he has worked hard to raise funds for the twinning association, running the weekly fairtrade coffee shop and stalls at neighbouring markets.

He said: “This is all very humbling. It’s lovely to be recognised.

“A lot of my life has been related to music but it has spilled out into all sorts of other areas.

“Everything I have done has been very rewarding. I’m glad that I’ve had the support of my dear wife Gill who is behind a lot of the things I do.”

Mr Holdaway will be formally presented with his medal later this year.

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