British Empire Medal for Ballater man

Alec Copland receives the British Empire Medal
Alec Copland receives the British Empire Medal

A Ballater man has become the third person in Aberdeenshire to be awarded the British Empire Medal for his outstanding service to the community.

Alec Copland was awarded the medal at Ballater’s Deeside Inn on Thursday May 1 by Lord-Lieutenant of Aberdeenshire, James Ingleby.

Mr Copland was surrounded by friends and family as he received the award last week.

The British Empire Medal recognises exceptional civil or military service.

The Lord-Lieutenant honoured Mr Copland with a speech recognising his many and varied contributions to the Community of Ballater before presenting him with the award. In his speech, the Lord-Lieutenant read out the first line of the citation for Mr Copland’s award. “In retirement, Alec has triumphed over personal adversity to make a singular contribution to the Ballater community.”

Following a serious illness, Mr Copland took early retirement from his successful career with Gordon District Council. In his retirement he was instrumental in setting up the Ballater and District Pipe Band and even learned to play the bagpipes. He went on to form the Ballater and District Probus Club and the Probus Walking Club.

But his service to the community does not stop there. He became Chair of the Ballater Royal Horticultural Society, of which the Duke and Duchess of Rothesay are members.

Mr Copland is also an active member of the British Legion, Elder of the Church and Chair of the Ballater Highland Games.