Hackney soccer boss and Moshi inventor given their gongs
- Credit: Archant
»A man who has helped transform the nation’s digital services, the brains behind Moshi Monsters and a business support manager were those from the area honoured in the New Year’s Honours list.
Mike Bracken, 45, of Oldfield Road, Stoke Newington, received a CBE for services to digital public services and voluntary service in Hackney.
Mr Bracken is the executive director of a government programme responsible for a digital revolution in Britain’s public services.
He is also the outgoing chairman of football club Sporting Hackney which he has presided over for the last six years, and has helped to improve the club’s facilities to transform it into a thriving one.
The club is in the national football pyramid and the first team plays in the Middlesex County Premier League.
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He said: “This is one of the most pleasant and unexpected honours I’ve received. I’m delighted, but mainly for others.
“I feel that I’m being used to recognise many thousands of people across the public service and in Hackney.
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“I see it as an expression of them being recognised. It’s down to others not me and I accept it on behalf of them.”
He said his wife and parents were “surprised and delighted”.
He added: “My brother Chris previously received a military commendation for his work in the RAF. When I told him he reminded me he had his since 1996.
“I’m always going to be his little brother. The thing about big brothers is they have to have one over you.”
Speaking passionately about Sporting Hackney FC, which was set up with a £400 community grant in 1987 and now runs four teams including an under-16 one.
He said: “We want youth members to stay in the game.
“We want them to stay in adult football.
“It helps the council solve all manner of social problems when you have somewhere for young men to go. I’m now helping with the long-term funding application for the club.
“I’m leaving a club that’s well-run and has a great committee running it. We are going against the grain and we are providing value to the borough at no cost.
“There’s a great deal of work to do to be the borough’s community development club.”
Michael Acton Smith, chief executive and founder of entertainment company Mind Candy in Bonhill Street, Shoreditch, was awarded an OBE for services to the creative industries.
The company created pet brand Moshi Monsters which has 80 million registered users worldwide. Clinton Paul McFarlane, a business support manager for the office of the parliamentary counsel, was awarded an MBE for public services and services to the community in Hackney.