AFTER years of campaigning the last surviving member of the Dam Busters bombing crew has been awarded an MBE.

George 'Jonny' Johnson, who flew on the famous raid in 1943 has been recognised 77 years after the iconic flight.

Coley resident Paul Walmsley helped lead the campaign to ensure the heroic pilot was given an honour.

"I think an MBE is something and I'm sure he'll be grateful when he gets it from the queen," he said.

"If you compare it with the cyclists who got CBE's, well, you just can't compare their achievements.

"I think it would have been a bit disrespectful if he hadn't got anything."

Mr Walmsley first contacted the veteran after discovering his father, a veteran of 110 flights as a navigator on Lancaster Bombers in 619 squadron, may have known Mr Johnson.

“I wrote him a letter in August 2013,” the 70-year-old Coley resident said.

“He wrote back and said he remembered the name but hadn’t met him.

“We stayed in regular contact and in May 2015 I thought I would put him in the shortlist for an honour.

“He didn’t get one that time round but the next year Carol Vorderman started a petition but unfortunately she’s had to pull out of campaigning.

“I’ve written to lots of people in an effort to get support, the best has to by Dame Vera Lynn.

“I feel they can’t really turn him down this time.

“For him I think it means more for the squadron. He’s said he’s not doing it for personal reasons but for members of the squadron.”