Published: June 10, 2013
Prince discusses Burnham Carnival's future during MBE presentation

Bob Nicholson MBEPrince Charles discussed the future of Burnham-On-Sea's Carnival while presenting resident Bob Nicholson with an MBE award for his services to tourism.

The Prince asked about the future of Somerset's carnivals when Bob, pictured, was at Buckingham Palace on Friday to receive an MBE for 50 years of service to local tourism.

Bob, who is President of Somerset Tourism Association and lives in Burnham, told "I was extremely surprised when the Prince of Wales started the conversation by asking if the Somerset Carnivals were being kept alive as had heard they brought so much pleasure to many people. He said that he hoped that they would continue and especially at Burnham-On-Sea."

Prince Charles - photo Dan Marsh"To say that I was surprised with the Prince's knowledge of our carnivals is an understatement."

"I was able to assure His Royal Highness that carnivals are being kept alive as part of the overall tourism experience in Somerset and that they help to sustain over 30,000 tourism jobs throughout the county."

"I said I would let the people of Somerset know the interest shown by him."

Bob was accompanied at the ceremony by his wife Anne, daughter Sharon and fellow Somerset Tourism Association Director Richard House from Brean Leisure Park, pictured below.

Bob said he is "deeply honoured" to be given the award, which was first announced during the Queen's New Year Honours.

Bob Nicholson and Richard HouseHe added: "The whole day was superb - it made me proud to be British to think that the Royal family give out these awards to people like me in local communities."

"It was a marvellous, unforgettable experience and I was very proud to accept the award on behalf of the Tourist Association."

Bob oversaw the setting up of the Somerset Tourism Association from its humble beginnings as Sedgemoor Tourism Association.

From his base at Brean Leisure Park, he promoted the Burnham-On-Sea area to tourists and retired from his role as Chairman in 2011 after a quarter of a century's service.

Bob, who lives on Burnham's Esplanade, was also recognised by Burnham and Highbridge Town Council in 2008 when he was presented with a Civic Award, as featured here.

Pictured: Top, Bob wearing his MBE medal; centre - Prince Charles (photo Dan Marsh) and above Bob with Richard House of Brean Leisure Park


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