A Runcorn mum who has fostered more than 400 children has received her MBE.

Christine Pugh, aged 62, was presented with her medal at Buckingham Palace on Friday by Prince Charles.

She has also set up a charity, Another Chance to Care, to support and recruit carers, and organise day trips for youngsters.

She has been caring for children since 1978.

Christine, of Navigation Close, Murdishaw, said: “I can’t imagine this house without children. I cry buckets every time they go.”

She thanked her husband, John, aged 62, for his support.

“I couldn’t have done this without him. I don’t think we’ll ever have an empty nest.”

Runcorn businesswoman Pat Foreman, who set up Food Northwest at The Heath Business Park, also received her MBE for services to the food industry.

She said: “Prince Charles has a keen interest in connecting farming and food and the whole food chain.

“We’ve got such innovative small companies as well as brand leaders. Eighty per cent of the food and drink manufacturing industries in the north west are within 50 miles of Runcorn.

“People need to eat and drink no matter what the ecomony is like. If we can keep costs down and come up with new ideas for products there will always be a future.”