Wait is over for Tunbridge Wells Mela organiser to receive his MBE

ROYAL HONOUR Mr Sandher receiving his MBE from Princess Anne Photo: BCA

THE organiser of the town’s Mela festival has finally received his MBE after being named in the late Queen’s Platinum Jubilee honours last summer.

Gurvinder Sandher, CEO of the Kent Equality Cohesion Council had been due to receive his award before the death of The Queen last year.

However, he was eventually given his MBE in a ceremony at Windsor Castle last week (February 28) by Princess Anne, the Princess Royal.

“It was a great honour for me and my family to receive my MBE from the Princess Royal,” he told the Times.

“For a son of immigrants from the Indian subcontinent to be standing in Windsor Castle being recognised for my work in the arts and with the communities of Kent shows what can be achieved with some luck and lots of hard work.

“We have already had a busy start to 2023 and are looking forward to delivering the Tunbridge Wells Mela Festival in July, one of our favourite events of the year, bringing communities together through music, food and dance to celebrate all that binds us together.”

Mr Sandher was also named a Deputy Lieutenant (DL) of Kent last November, after being nominated by the late Queen in the spring.

DLs support the Lord Lieutenant of Kent, the official representative of the Crown in the county.

Their duties include greeting and accompanying royalty and heads of state during official visits to the county and presenting honours and awards on behalf of the Crown.

DLs also advise on nominating individuals or organisations for various honours.

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