A campaign by the Wiltshire Times to strip a death-crash driver of his OBE is gaining momentum.
The paper is preparing to present a petition to the Queen and the Prime Minister.
The “Strip Stibbe of his OBE” campaign was launched in September after Lt Col Giles Stibbe was awarded an OBE for military service in the former Yugoslavia.
Stibbe was convicted in 2001 of dangerous driving after a crash four years ago in which three people – including a five-year-old child – were killed.
The court heard Stibbe had overtaken on the brow of a hill, which caused a crash between two other cars.
He then drove away from the scene and later claimed he was not aware of the crash.
Stibbe was fined £700 and the court was told he was needed by the military due to his ability to speak Arabic.
The family tried to appeal against the court’s decision but was unsuccessful.
Shops and pubs across west and north Wiltshire have voiced support for the paper’s campaign and there are 500 signatures on its petition, including those of the parents of one of the crash victims, who visited the paper’s office to sign it.
Times reporter Jenny Haworth will accompany west Wiltshire MP Dr Andrew Murrison to present the petition directly to the House of Commons.
Haworth said: “After coming to terms with the deaths of their children, the families of the victims were then horrified to hear that Stibbe had been awarded an OBE.
“We want him to be stripped of his honour and we believe that this is part of a wider problem with the honours system and how a convicted person can be honoured.”
The paper is aiming to get 1,000 signatures and take the petition to the House of Commons.
By Sarah Lagan