The chairman of Sudbury Royal Air Forces Association has been awarded a National RAFA certificate.
On Friday, Ray Smith, a Babergh district councillor and former mayor of Sudbury, was given the National Presidential Certificate for services rendered during his nine years as the president of the Sudbury branch.
Awarding the certificate were two Air Marshals, as RAFA National President Air Marshal Sir Dusty Miller was joined by branch president Air Marshal Sir John Kemball.
Surrounded by friends, family and branch members, Mr Smith was handed his award in the Mayor’s Parlour in Sudbury Town Hall.
Serving in the RAF from 1952-1957, Mr Smith has helped transform the branch.
“It was a complete surprise,” said Mr Smith. “I thought it was my lads winding me up until I got a call from headquarters.
“It means everything, not just to me but to the branch and the area and Sudbury as a whole.”
During the award presentation Mr Smith spoke about when he first took over the club and how since, with the efforts of all the members, the club had gone from raising £500 a year for the Wings Appeal to raising £5,000 and sometimes more.
Praising Mr Smith, Wings Appeal organiser and standard bearer for the branch, Mike Marsh, said the award was a celebration of the whole branch’s efforts.