THE chairman of a Wiltshire charity that provides access to clean water for more than 250k people on the African continent has been recognised in the New Year Honours.

Nigel Linacre, co-founder and chair of the Board of Trustees of the Chippenham-based water charity, WellBoring, has been awarded the British Empire Medal by the King.

The honour recognises his hard work, dedication and determination and the charity’s efforts to bring clean water to thousands of people in Kenya and other countries in Africa.

Nigel, 65, co-founded WellBoring in 2011 with Colin Brown, Graeme Vousden and Jefferson Cann.

Over the past 12 years it has dug wells to bring safe water to more than 300 poor rural primary schools, mostly in Kenya, and in the process transforming over 250,000 lives. 

Mr Linacre found out he had been nominated about a month beforehand and kept it secret from everyone but his close family.

The medal is likely to be awarded later this year by the Lord Lieutenantof Wiltshire, and is accompanied by an invitation to a Buckingham Palace garden party.

“This honour recognises the life-changing work of WellBoring”, says Nigel. “I’d like to thank everyone who has helped us change so many lives. Together we can do so much more.”

A spokesperson for the organisation said: “This news concludes an incredible year for WellBoring.

“We can look to 2022 as the year we reached 300 wells, bringing clean, sustainable water sources to 300,000 people, and improving educational and economic outcomes throughout the areas they serve.

“Energised by this recognition and celebration, we look forward to more hard work and greater accomplishment in the year to come.

“For 2023, our goal is to reach 400 wells created or restored. Each well provides clean water to an average of 1,000 beneficiaries, meaning 400,000 lives enhanced.

“By increasing our scale and creating partnerships, we intend to reach 1,000 wells and a million lives benefited by 2025.

In 2022 we once again took part in the Big Give. We achieved our target and raised £13,325.

“That means two wells, and two thousand people with access to clean water sources. Every £6 given translates to one more person with clean water and brings us closer to our goals.”