THEY are the unsung heroes of Hampshire who have been honoured by the Queen in her Diamond Jubilee year.

From accident inspectors to teachers, first aiders to fundraisers, people across the county are celebrating being named in the Birthday Honours list today.

Southampton teacher Manju Tank has dedicated 40 years of her life to helping Hampshire’s ethnic minorities access vital services.

Mrs Tank, who lives in Shirley, is being made MBE for services to education following a career spanning four decades which has seen her help hundreds of city youngsters overcome language barriers.

Now a maths teacher at Taunton’s College, the mum-of-two started off life in the city in the voluntary sector before teaching English as a second language.

A key part of her work has been to help members of the Punjabi and Bangladeshi communities access education services, while she has also served as a magistrate for 26 years.

After learning of her MBE, Mrs Tank told the Daily Echo: “It is an extremely proud moment for me and my family. The experience has been humbling.

“I think the best part of my career has been the enthusiasm and the challenges that young people bring.”

It was also a proud day for Wim Hart, who was made OBE for his work at the Marine Accident Investigation Branch.

The 61-year-old, from Locks Heath, has been at the Southampton-based organisation since 2003, having previously served as an engineer in the Royal Navy for 37 years.

In the past decade, he has travelled the world to investigate accidents.

Much of his work involves offering expert evidence in inquests and making recommendations in the wake of serious incidents.

But Mr Hart said the most rewarding part of his job was helping those affected by marine accidents to understand what had happened.

The dad-of-two told the Daily Echo: “It has genuinely been a great job over the years.

“Everything is a challenge and you don’t know what that challenge is going to be from one case to the next.

“I am extremely proud to have received this honour – it is the icing on the cake as I head towards retirement.”

Hampshire businesswoman Emma Solomon has been recognised with an OBE after founding the Silver Surfers’ Day.

She set the campaign up in 2002 to encourage older and less confident people to get the most out of computers and the Internet. Over the last decade more than 150,000 people have taken part.

Emma is also the managing director of Otterbourne-based Digital Unite. F

irst aid expert Azalia Gosling is receiving a British Empire Medal for more than 30 years of volunteer work with the British Red Cross Society in Southampton.

Mrs Gosling, from Shirley, said: “You get great satisfaction on its own for doing the work, but to be honoured in this prestigious year is fantastic.”

Myra Clare, 80, of Harestock, has been awarded a British Empire Medal for her 23-year service to charity group Parkinson’s UK.

Ms Clare, chairman of the Winchester branch for more than a decade, said: “I really couldn’t do the work without the help of those on the Winchester committee.”

David Howells, the former director of Corporate Services at Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, receives the Queen’s Fire Service Medal after 40 years of tireless work.

The dad-of-two, from Winchester, joined the service in 1973 and retired in January.

He has also served as a magistrate, is a keen marathon runner and fundraiser, and will compete in the World Firefighter Games in Sydney later this year.

Retired Wren Rita Lock, from Gosport, said she was “astonished” to receive her MBE for more than 50 years’ voluntary service to the Royal Naval Assocation.

Elizabeth Marley receives the same accolade for her work as head of Children’s, Youth and School Library Services at Hampshire County Council.

Elsewhere, Colin Meadows is made MBE for his work as higher executive officer at Jobcentre Plus and fundraiser Mary Moss is honoured with a British Empire Medal for services to people with hearing impairments.

Janice Waterman also received a British Empire Medal, having run Scouts and Cubs groups in King’s Somborne for nearly 40 years.

Alresford farmer Peter Mills has also been awarded a British Empire Medal for 30 years’ service to the Alresford Agricultural Show.

Meanwhile, head of Counter Terrorism and UK Operational Policy Dr Michael McCafferty OBE is made CBE.

On the Isle of Wight, Anthony Roberts is made OBE for services to the medical field through his work in ornithology and the community and Dr Mark Denman-Johnson is made MBE for services to Primary Care.