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Last Updated: Saturday, 30 December 2006, 09:29 GMT
Foster couple honoured with MBEs
John and Joy Crosby
The couple are 'staggered' by the honours
A couple who have been foster carers for more than 30 years have been recognised in the Queen's New Year's Honours list.

John Crosby and wife Joy, who live near Cardiff, both receive MBEs for services to children and families.

The Crosbys, who have three daughters of their own, work for Rhondda Cynon Taf Council, and said they were "staggered by this incredible news".

Mr Crosby, 64, and Mrs Crosby, 61, have cared for 79 babies since June 1975.

The Crosbys only care for babies, and Mrs Crosby said the decades of care stemmed from her love for them.

She said: "All I've ever wanted to do is to care for babies, and I never thought for a minute that anything such as this could happen to an ordinary person like me.

All I've ever wanted to do is to care for babies
Joy Crosby

"If we can help babies in the first stages of their lives that means more to me than anything."

Mrs Crosby added: "I could haven't done it without John and we have fostered babies aged a few hours old up to a few months old. Some have stayed with us until they were three years old."

Mr Crosby said he was "staggered by this incredible news".

"We both felt honoured when we were invited to a Royal garden party at Buckingham Palace in 2003, and were pleased to think that the work of foster carers could be recognised in such a way," he added.

"But this is something else altogether, and I very much hope it sends out a message to anyone who is thinking of becoming a foster carer, that fostering is recognised nationally as a truly worthwhile vocation."

Paul Sergeant
Ex-Millennium Stadium chief Paul Sergeant is an OBE

The Crosbys are caring for three babies at the moment.

Elsewhere in south east Wales, former Cardiff scrum half Gareth Edwards receives a CBE for services to sport and rugby.

BBC broadcaster and entertainer Owen Money receives an OBE as does Paul Sergeant, who left his post as chief executive of Cardiff's Millennium Stadium earlier this month.

Professor Stephen Tomlinson, 62, who stepped down as provost and deputy vice-chancellor of Cardiff University last summer, is also recognised with an OBE for services to medicine, as is leading paediatrician Professor Jo Sibert.

Among MBEs are former Welsh Business Woman of the Year, Cardiff-based furniture designer Angela Gidden; community radio and music training manager John Lenney, based in Butetown in Cardiff; Margaret Hazell of the Wales TUC; Jayne Medlicott, nursing director at Hospice of the Valleys in Tredegar; Cynthia Dyke, a neighbourhood watch coordinator from Taffs Well and Pauline Davis, switchboard manager at the Welsh assembly.


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