Page last updated at 01:01 GMT, Saturday, 16 June 2007 02:01 UK

Baseball coach, 77, appointed MBE

Margaret Borley and footballer Gary Stevens (picture from Tonbridge council)
Mrs Borley was given a lifetime achievement award in May

A baseball coach who is still training the players of the future at the age of 77 has been made an MBE.

Retired language teacher and grandmother-of-three Margaret Borley has been involved with hockey for 50 years and baseball for 25 years.

She has coached up to several hundred children at Tonbridge Bobcats Baseball Club in Kent - occasionally training two generations of the same family.

"I enjoy seeing the development of young people," Mrs Borley said.

"I've met some charming young people over the years. It's very pleasing to see.

"Some had learning difficulties or behavioural difficulties, and it's pleasing to see them go on."

'Great surprise'

Mrs Borley said she was now planning to take a "less prominent role" in the club, but she would miss it if she "dropped out entirely".

Adding that she wants to spend more time with her grandchildren as well as pursuing her hobbies of history, stained glass, church windows, and natural history, she said: "I've got so much on my plate at the moment."

Her award in this year's birthday honours came about after some adult players who she coached as youngsters teamed up to put her name forward.

The former president of Kent Hockey Association, who lives in Tonbridge, said: "It was a great surprise when the envelope landed."

And the honour comes weeks after Mrs Borley was awarded a lifetime achievement award for coaching by Tonbridge and Malling council, presented to her last month by former Tottenham Hotspur and England football player, Gary Stevens.

Kent honours

Knights Bachelor

  • Professor David Melville CBE, vice-chancellor of the University of Kent, for services to higher and further education, Canterbury

Companion of the Order of the Bath

  • Rear Admiral Kim John Borley, Tonbridge


  • Paul Newman Hudson Clokie, leader of Ashford Borough Council, for services to local government, Ashford


  • Margaret Borley, coach, Tonbridge Bobcats youth baseball team, for services to sport, Tonbridge
  • Gordon Walter Fortescue, for services to the community in Ashford
  • Julia Caroline Hands, chief executive and chair of Hand Picked Hotels, for services to the hospitality industry, Sevenoaks
  • Frederic William Jaeger, policy adviser, Civil Service Commissioners, Cabinet Office, Ashford
  • John Ramsay Maitland, for services to aviation, Tenterden
  • Helen Norris, head teacher, Phoenix Children's Resource Centre and head of Pre-School Specialist Support Services in Bromley, Tatsfield
  • Ellis David Murray Parker, higher catering officer, Metropolitan Police Service, for services to the police, Longfield
  • Thomas Michael Pearson, for services to Cruse Bereavement Care, Hythe
  • Frederick Edward Rolleston, for charitable services through the Paula Carr Trust in Shepway, Romney Marsh
  • Peter Saunders, vice-chairman, Mid-Kent College Governing Body, for services to further education, Maidstone
  • Jenny Seatherton, for services to deaf people in the Diocese of Canterbury
  • Linda Ann Tout, founder and leader, Young Searchers Charity, for services to young people, Chatham
  • Marie Agnes Vyse, for services to the community in Cliffe Woods, Rochester
  • Michael Wilkins, formerly director of sports at the University of Kent, for services to higher education and to sport, Canterbury
  • William Peter Williams, former chairman of Canterbury Festival, for services to the arts in Kent, Faversham
  • Norma Winstone, jazz musician and singer, for services to music, Deal

  • James Barker-McCardle, deputy chief constable, Kent Police

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