Three people from South Ayrshire were singled out for New Year honours, the annual recognition of the achievements and service of extraordinary people across the UK dished out by the Queen.

There were awards for a political stalwart, a man of the cloth, and for a HM Revenues and Customs worker.

John Scott, 70, who served as an MSP representing Ayr for 21 years, before last year’s elections, was awarded an OBE (Officers of the Order of the British Empire) for Political and Public Service.

Commenting on the award, he told the Advertiser: “I was surprised, humbled and delighted to be given this award in the Queen’s New Years Honours List.”

He insisted that the award did not just belong to him, highlighting the work of those who have supported him throughout his career, his family, as well as his former constituents.

“This honour also recognises the loyal and dedicated hard work of my diligent staff, the help and commitment of my wife Sheila, my family, and many other individuals on whom I depended to help support me and my constituents, and deliver on my political work, over the past 21 years,” added the former Scottish Conservative politician.

He continued: “I have been privileged to represent the towns and villages of Ayr, Prestwick, Troon, Dundonald, Symington, Tarbolton and Mossblown over this time and made many friends along the way.

“I now look forward to spending more time with my family and grandchildren, whom I have spent more time with already, in the last six months, than I did in the last five years put together.”

Also receiving an OBE was Evelyn Jane Bowman JP, from Prestwick.

Evelyn is a senior complaints manager on the Ministerial Complaints Team at HM Revenue and Customs. Her OBE was awarded for Public Service.

Archibald Murdoch Ford, a Troon reverend, was also recognised for his support to his community, receiving a BEM (Medallists of the Order of the British Empire) for services to the community in Lochwinnoch, Renfrewshire where he is a minister at the Calder United Free Church.

Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Ayrshire and Arran, Sheriff Iona McDonald OBE sent her congratulations and best wishes to three Ayrshire residents who were recognised in the New Year’s Honours List.

She said: “I am delighted that these three Ayrshire residents have been recognised for their work both locally and on a national level. The diverse nature of the areas in which they work highlights the range of talent and professionalism that is to be found across the county.”