FORMER Olympic gymnast Suzanne Dando-Reynolds has been awarded a BEM.

Mrs Dando-Reynolds, 53, was recognised for her work with charities including Against Breast Cancer, of which she is patron, and Riding for the Disabled, both based in Abingdon. She has raised hundreds of thousands of pounds over the years thanks to her charity efforts, which included climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in aid of the Children’s Trust.

Mrs Dando-Reynolds, who lives in Woodstock with her husband Adam Reynolds, said: “It was such a wonderful letter I received. It is one to keep and treasure. I’ve always done work for charity and I’m so passionate about my chosen charities. We don’t do it for reward.”

Her talent was first recognised at the age of 11 and she competed at the 1980 Olympics in Moscow but retired from gymnastics soon after. She moved to Oxfordshire in 1993.