A LONG-SERVING volunteer with many groups across town has been made an Honorary Citizen of Otley.

Former forester and parks department employee John Popplewell received the honour during the Town Council's AGM at The Bridge Church on Monday, May 15.

Mr Popplewell was a Cub Scout leader for many years and has also volunteered for St John Ambulance, working as a First Responder, the RSPB and Natural England.

Other local groups he has actively supported include Otley Neighbourhood Watch, Otley Action for Older People and the local branch of the Royal British Legion.

He is also a local bat expert and was an active member of the West Yorkshire Bat Group for 24 years - from 1991 to 2015.

Town Mayor Councillor Nigel Francis (Ind, Danefield), announcing his Honorary Citizen award, said: "This is an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the town for many years and provided exceptional service.

"He has been a committee member and chairman of Otley Neighbourhood Watch, helping it establish the first no cold calling zone, and for the past ten years has been a volunteer with Otley Action for Older People, helping out at their luncheon club and acting as an escort on trips."

Accepting his certificate, Mr Popplwell said: "Thank you very much indeed to the council and the town of Otley."