MEMBERS of Bolton Lions received a royal honour when they were invited to Buckingham Palace.

Jeff Hartley, President of the Bolton Lions, and members of the club joined hundreds from Lions Clubs International at a ceremony at the palace to mark the charity's 100th anniversary.

It was the snowiest day of the year, even in London, but Mr Hartley made it to London and the palace.

The Royal Reception was hosted by The Countess of Wessex G.C.V.O. who is the Patron of Lions Clubs of the British Isles.

Mr Hartley said: "The day was fantastic to be invited to the palace. I'm president of Bolton Lions this year so the members said 'you should go'.

"It was a great honour for Bolton Lions to get to go.

"The palace is a fantastic place, we were in the throne room for the reception with about 300 Lions from all over the country.

"The weather was a challenge for us all but most made it.

"The Countess of Wessex is Lions Clubs patron so she hosted the evening and is a lovely lady who spoke to us all then mixed with everyone.

"For a local lad educated at Brownlow Fold School it was a great honour."

Lions Clubs International is the world's largest service club organisation, with over 1.35 million members in more than 200 countries.

Founded in 1917 the organisation is best known for fighting blindness, but they also volunteer for various global and community projects including environmental work and aiding the elderly and disabled.