MORTON got a mention at Buckingham Palace in front of Prince William as a long-serving Greenock welfare officer collected his MBE.

John Reid, who lives in Wemyss Bay, brought up the Ton during an investiture ceremony in which he was honoured for 35 years of helping vulnerable people in Inverclyde and beyond through his job with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

The 54-year-old was awarded an MBE in the Queen's birthday honours list in June and proudly took receipt of his medal from the Duke of Cambridge at the palace last Tuesday.

It was John's charity work and football coaching background that led to his favourite team getting a royal audience.

He told the Tele: "I've met Prince Charles before through work and this time it was Prince William.

"He asked what I do and I mentioned work and the charity work I do. "I also said I was a football coach and he asked what team I support and I dropped Greenock Morton into the conversation and he seemed to know who I was talking about.

"He's president of the English FA so he has a big interest in football. "You only get those couple of minutes with him but he makes you feel that you're the only person in the room."

John is currently area manager for legacy benefits with the DWP.

He attended Greenock High School and James Watt College before graduating with an MBA from the Open University in 2002.

Outside of work, he was a founding member of Ardgowan Football Development Club and launched a team for primary school children in Wemyss Bay, volunteering with the side until 2017.

John, who has lived in the village for 27 years, has also completed various charity fundraisers, including running the Loch Ness Marathon in aid of Ardgowan Hospice and walking the Great Wall of China for Maggie's Centres.

He was accompanied at the investiture ceremony with his wife of 28 years, Ann, who is 51, daughter Jennifer, 25, and son Cameron, 23.

John said: "It was a great day. "I'm not sure I believed it was going to happen until they let me in the gate. "It was a really special day both for me and Ann and the kids.

John was awarded an MBE for services to vulnerable customers in Scotland and the community in Inverclyde.