AN EAST Kilbride man has been honoured for his work with Parkinson’s UK.

The Prime Minister has recognised Jim Hilliard for dedicating over 25 years to supporting the charity and helping the lives of those affected by the disease in his community.

Having cared for his late wife Betty, who lived with the illness until she passed away in 2001, Jim has been pivotal in securing better local services, including the first Parkinson’s nurse for his region and specialist exercise classes that attract around 60 people a week, so that no-one in his area has to suffer with the disease alone. Jim has been instrumental in setting up a drop-in group and has also spent countless hours on the frontline collecting money from the public to fundraise for the charity.

He is now the latest recipient of the Points of Light award, which recognises outstanding volunteers who are making a change in their community and inspiring others. Each day, someone, somewhere in the country is selected to receive the award to celebrate their remarkable achievements.

In a personal letter to Jim, Theresa May said: "Your involvement with Parkinson’s UK over the last quarter of a century has transformed the lives of hundreds of people struggling with this debilitating illness throughout South Lanarkshire, East Renfrewshire and the Southside of Glasgow. Thanks to your unwavering commitment, you have helped secure a Parkinson’s nurse and run exercise classes for your local community. You should be tremendously proud of your achievements."

Jim said: "It’s a great honour to receive this award. I’m just an ordinary chap from the East End of Glasgow and it’s heartening to see the work of grassroots volunteers recognised in this way. It makes me happy that I can share this award with my late wife Betty and our family as well as with the members of the Lanarkshire and Glasgow South Branch of Parkinson’s UK. They’ve been a great support to me and so many others and it’s always a pleasure to work with them."