FORMER college bursar Christopher Walton, who has raised and distributed millions of pounds to Oxfordshire churches, becomes an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Mr Walton is the president of the Oxfordshire Historic Churches Trust, set up in 1964 to help with grants to repair and restore the county’s churches.

He receives the award for his services to the local community.

Mr Walton, who lives with his wife Judith in Boars Hill, became involved with the trust shortly after retiring from Wolfson College, Oxford, where he was bursar from 1987 and 1995.

He became chairman of the churches trust in 1999 and has overseen the distribution of more than £2m to local churches.

Major projects that the trust has helped fund include major schemes at the University Church of St Mary the Virgin, Oxford; St Helen’s Church, Abingdon; St Mary’s, Kidlington; and St Leonard’s in Sunningwell.

Mr Walton, who is 81 later this month, said: “I am delighted. About 45 to 50 churches a year now benefit from the money we raise and grant.

“The bike ride we organise in September every year alone raises over £100,000 and involves a thousand people from the county.”