A RIDDLESDEN man has been awarded an accolade in recognition of living with diabetes for 50 years.

Steven Barrett was diagnosed with diabetes just after his fifth birthday, in July, 1973, and received his first insulin injection the following month.

Now he has been presented with the Alan Nabarro Medal by Diabetes UK.

Steven says that over the years, diabetes care and treatment has changed hugely.

"I wish I could go back in time and give my teenage self the knowledge I've accrued over the last 50 years of living with diabetes," he adds.

Half a century ago, insulin was administered with just one morning injection. Syringes and needles had to be sterilised by boiling in water, and to try to track blood glucose levels at home, only urine testing was available – which was done by test tube and dropper, but it only indicated what the blood sugar reading may have been several hours previously.

In his mid teens, he became one of the first people in Airedale to trial multiple daily insulin injections.

More recently, Steven switched to wearing a monitoring device to constantly check his blood sugar levels, eradicating the need to carry out multiple finger pricks.