THE man who prepared David Walliams and Eddie Izzard for their epic sporting challenges has been awarded the OBE in the New Year's Honours.

Marlow resident Prof Greg Whyte was given the honour in recognition to his services to sport, sport science and charity.

A former Olympic pentathlete and European and World Championship, he put Little Britain star Walliams through his paces before his swim along the length of the River Thames and helped get comedian Izzard ready for his quest to run 43 marathons in 52 days.

Veteran broadcaster Nicholas Parsons is among the other Bucks residents to receive honours.

The 90-year-old, who lives near Princes Risborough, was awarded the CBE for services to children's charities - having previously been made an OBE for services to drama and broadcasting.

He said: "I think honours are a wonderful thing to receive if you have worked hard and that is recognised. I don't understand these people who are pompous and say they don't want it."

Also receiving the CBE were Marlovian Rita Clifton, for services to the advertising industry, and Emma Pidding of Chalfont St Giles for her voluntary political work.

She currently holds the position of Chairman of the National Conservative Convention and Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party Board, making her the party's most senior volunteer in the country.

She said: "It is an immense honour to be recognised in the New Year’s Honours. I am passionate about the work I do as a volunteer for the Conservative Party. My volunteer colleagues and I work tirelessly campaigning around the country. We are out on the doorsteps whatever the weather and whatever the political climate."

Thames Valley Police Superintendent David Elworthy, of Holmer Green, was made an OBE for services to protective security, and Map Action CEO Nigel Woof of Chalfont St Giles received the gong for humanitarian services.

Aylesbury's Ruth Dearnley - CEO of the Stop The Traffik campaign group - also received an OBE for services to awareness and prevention of human trafficking.

MBEs went to Iver resident Henry Hinde for voluntary service to the environment and Candida Piercy of Aylesbury. The Liberal Democrats' Federal Executive Committee member was given the award for voluntary
political service.