A TIRELESS, dedicated fundraiser for blind people has received a British Empire Medal (BEM).

Beryl Duggan, of Curzon Park, Chester, was recognised for setting up a helpline and fundraising for the British Retinitis Pigmentosa Society, which funds research into inherited diseases which cause blindness.

Beryl explained she first became involved with the charitable work in 1976 because her son Chris, who was aged five at the time, had been born blind due to retinitis pigmentosa.

She runs a craft club for visually impaired people at Hoole United Reform Church every other Wednesday, takes groups of blind people on holiday to the Lake District and takes part in street collections along with her son and husband Jim.

“I’m quite honoured really”, said Beryl, who has another son, Mark. “Over the years I have had a great band of friends who have supported me and they’re still supporting me. I couldn’t do it without them.”

Beryl’s group for partially sighted and blind people has made dozens of hand-made cards which were sent to soldiers in Afghanistan as part of care packages for the troops.

Beryl, who is currently recovering from a knee-replacement operation, hopes to be fully mobile again soon.