Queen awards high-flying researcher

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THE Queen has rewarded a researcher for his work at a Czech church in the first ceremony of its kind.

Edgar Wille, who is an associate at Ashridge Business School, was given a Royal Maundy Gift on the same day as Her Majesty’s birthday.

He said: “You are so busy making sure you are where you ought to be that you do not really have time to enjoy it.”

Presentation of the awards, never previously given on the special day, was broadcast live on BBC1.

Mr Wille, now 88, was recognised for his work at the Prague Anglican Church of St Clement’s, where he was a church warden for eight years and a lay minister for four of those years.

The Royal Maundy Gift winners were given two purses containing special coins.

There was one for £5 to commemorate The Duke of Edinburgh’s 90th birthday, and silver penny pieces that equal the monarch’s age.

Mr Wille was awarded an OBE in 1999 for running a scheme to help around 80 Czech and Slovak companies to adapt to the free market economy.

He led it for 15 years for the Ashridge Business School.

Mr Wille, from Durrants Road, Northchurch, is a reader at the village’s St Mary’s Church and St Bartholomew’s in Wigginton.