Maryon Stewart has been awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) in the 2018 New Year’s Honours list for her services to charity.
Maryon, who is known for her work in women’s health, received the honour for her work with the Angelus Foundation, which she founded after her 21-year-old daughter, Hester, died from a legal high in 2009. She was instrumental in raising awareness about the dangers of psychoactive drugs sold on the high-street, known as ‘legal highs’ or ‘new psychoactive substances’ (NPS).
Maryon campaigned for seven years against the open sale of the legal highs, finally succeeding in May 2016 when The Psychoactive Substances Act came into effect, which banned the supply of legal highs and NPS.
Speaking about the award, Maryon commented: “I’m honoured to be the recipient of such an outstanding award and accept it as part of the wider Angelus team. This is a very special, yet sad, day for me, as I’d love to share it with my daughter Hester. I am so proud that my efforts to campaign against legal highs not only prompted Government change but, through increased awareness, also prevented harm and saved many young lives, leaving other families whole.”
Maryon has since returned to her original career as an expert in the menopause.