HertsWatch, the umbrella organisation for Neighbourhood Watch across Hertfordshire, has received a Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service for “excellence in voluntary activities carried out by groups in the community”.

Chair, Sue Thompson, pictured, who was also invited to the Queen’s garden party at Buckingham Palace in June, said: “We are delighted to receive the award. It reflects the incredible effort that many hundreds of volunteers, from street representatives to Ward Co-ordinators, have given to developing Neighbourhood Watch across the county. In particular the 10 district co-ordinators should be immensely proud to see their hard work being recognised.

“Neighbourhood Watch is a fantastic way of helping to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour. Through the Online Watch Link (OWL), we are able to email residents to let them know about crimes happening locally in their area at the click of a button and offer them helpful and simple crime prevention advice. It also helps residents to have a sense of community spirit.”

The accolade is the equivalent of an MBE for groups, charities and associations. HertsWatch will be presented with a signed certificate from the Queen at a presentation ceremony by Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant of Hertfordshire Robert Voss, CBE, later in the year.

HertsWatch currently has 137,000 households in Hertfordshire signed up to Neighbourhood Watch, which is believed to be one of the largest Force Area memberships in England and Wales.