THE father of missing chef Claudia Lawrence has been awarded an OBE for services to the families of missing people in the Queen's birthday honours.

Peter Lawrence is the founder of the Guardianship (Missing Persons) Bill 2017, known as Claudia’s Law, and is also a member of the Missing People’s Choir, which reached the Britain’s Got Talent final in 2017.

Mr Lawrence, 71, had been campaigning for six years for legislation that will allow families or friends to become legal guardian of a person’s affairs while they are missing, and manage their bank accounts and bills.

He began his fight after his daughter, chef Claudia Lawrence, who is originally from Malton, disappeared on her way to work at York University in March 2009.

The legislation was given Royal Assent in Parliament in April 2017 following the efforts of Mr Lawrence and charity Missing People, but it is still to be put into force.

Mr Lawrence said: “I got a letter from the Cabinet Office and I was in total shock. I feel I am receiving it on behalf of the Missing People charity who have been working on this legislation.”

He added: “I have been working for the charity for nine years now and I’ve come across so many people who are suffering from not being able to deal with loves ones affairs, mainly financial.”