Local councillor awarded MBE in Jubilee honours list

Published Monday 6 June 2022 at 14:50

Coun Zamir Khan has been named in the Queen’s birthday honours list for 2022.

The Labour ward councillor for Blackburn Central ward has received an MBE for his services to Blackburn Muslim Burial Society and to the wider community, particularly during the Covid pandemic.

When the Blackburn Muslim Burial Society (BMBS) was called upon to give vital support to local Muslim families faced with losing loved ones during the pandemic, Coun Khan, as a BMBS volunteer, quickly mobilised the local community. He supported the voluntary group to engage with the local public sector agencies including the Council, East Lancashire Hospitals Trust and the Coroner’s Office, all while working under difficult circumstances amid Covid restrictions.

Coun Khan has served as a local councillor for almost 20 years. He also spends the majority of his spare time volunteering and supporting various causes across Blackburn. Many of these became close to his heart during his time as Mayor of Blackburn with Darwen during 2012/13 and he has remained involved ever since – including East Lancashire Hospice and Miles of Smiles, a charity for young carers.

He has also set up Queen’s Park & Audley Asian Advice Forum (QAAAF) and trained as a Citizens’ Advice Bureau Advisor and Community Interpreter to help local residents access support. He is also a long term supporter of the Al-Imdaad Foundation and other charities.

Coun Khan is involved in a number of local community sports clubs, including Blackburn Kabaddi Club, Hyndburn Sports & Kabaddi Club and Blackburn Asian Active Sports Forum, which he supports with fundraising, community events and promotion. He also feels privileged to be involved in various other charities both in the UK and overseas.

Coun Khan commented:

When I opened the letter telling me I was being recognised with an MBE, I was shocked and felt disbelief. I then had to keep it quiet for four or five weeks – not even my wife knew!

I have been supporting the community for 25 to 30 years and it’s an honour to serve Blackburn. “Having an MBE is the icing on the cake for me.

I want to dedicate my MBE award to my late parents and my brother, and to all my family, colleagues and friends who continue to support me – and especially the local community, as without them I wouldn’t have this recognition and my thanks must go to them.

Leader of Blackburn with Darwen Council, Coun Phil Riley, said:

My congratulations go to my colleague Zamir. He is a very determined individual who has dedicated his life to helping others. He is someone who regularly goes the extra mile to help people, always looking for solutions to problems and working with others to make things happen.

The Queen’s birthday honours list released on 1 June included other people with links to Blackburn with Darwen:

  • Kam Kothia, Chair of the Board of Star Academies – awarded an OBE
  • Miranda Barker, Chief Executive of East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce – awarded an OBE
  • Andrew Rhodes, former Chief Constable for Lancashire Police – awarded an OBE
  • Banu Adam, founder of Arts2Heal charity – awarded a British Empire Medal
  • Joanne Mohammed, an NHS nurse who worked at Royal Blackburn Hospital for over 20 years – awarded a British Empire Medal
  • Tim Murrell of Lancashire Fire & Rescue – awarded an Queen’s Fire Service Medal

Denise Park, Blackburn with Darwen Council Chief Executive, added:

I always feel proud when the Queen’s honours lists are announced to see that Blackburn with Darwen people, or people with strong links to the borough, are included.

We are a borough where community pride and helping others is in our DNA and there are so many deserving people here. It’s right that they are recognised through the national honours programme and my congratulations goes to each of them.

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