The man behind QPR Football Club’s legacy programme visited Buckingham Palace to pick up a top FA award from Prince William.
Andy Evans, chief executive of QPR in the Community Trust, was named as one of 150 outstanding ‘grassroots heroes’ at the palace on Monday.
He met the Duke of Cambridge, the president of the Football Association, which this year celebrates its 150th anniversary.
Mr Evans has worked at the club’s charitable arm since its inception in 1994 and took the lead role five years later.
He said: “Over the last two decades I’ve been able to combine my passion for football, QPR and making a difference in the local community.
“It has been a privilege and I hope our work has led to young people having the opportunity to fulfil their potential.
“Although I’ve accepted the award, it’s the coaches and staff, past and present, at QPR in the Community Trust who also deserve recognition.
“Hopefully, this raises the profile of the important role of people making sure the game is accessible to all in the local community.”
The trust is a huge part of the local neighbourhood in White City, where the Championship side has been based for nearly a century, for people aged four to 90.
It aims to use the power of sport to tackle racism, improve people’s health and in projects to divert teenagers from crime and anti-social behaviour. It also works in schools, with disabled people and in outreach programmes in Africa.