TWO champions of cancer care at Withybush Hospital are to be recognised for their fundraising work in the New Year’s honours list.

Bernie George, 67 and Trish George, 64, of Hakin, Milford Haven will both receive the British Empire Medal for services to Withybush Hospital Chemotherapy Day Unit.

Bernie and Trish are the custodians of the Withybush Hospital Cancer Day Unit Appeal, which has a charity shop at Riverside, Haverfordwest.

Through their fundraising efforts and the generosity of members of the public, the appeal has raised more than £365,000 since the Georges started it in 2008.

“We are honoured to receive this medal, and we accept it on behalf of our 20 volunteers.”

“We were gobsmacked when we found out,” said Bernie.

“It came totally out of the blue and we don’t know who nominated us,” he added.

The husband and wife have both kept the news secret from all their family, and are excited to be able to tell them.

Trish said: “I’m just so delighted, it’s fantastic.

“For me to keep a secret is something special in itself, I haven’t even told our son!

“I just put it in a drawer and tried to forget about it!”

Alongside two other organisations, the Withybush Hospital CDU Appeal contributed towards £670,000 for renovating the cancer care unit at the hospital.

“It is difficult enough to have to deal with a cancer diagnosis, but at least patients are now going to a good place,” said Bernie.

The other two organisations which contributed were Adam’s Bucketful of Hope, and Hywel Dda University Health Board’s Pembrokeshire Cancer Services Fund.

The health board also provided reserve funds towards the cancer care unit, which opened on January 28, 2017.

Bernie was also an active participant in planning the new Pembrokeshire Haematology and Oncology Day Unit (PHODU) which opened in February 2017.

The Georges lost their daughter Nia to cancer in 2003.