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Knighthood for Andreas Whittam Smith in Birthday Honours list

15 June 2015

Honoured: the First Church Estates Commissioner, Andreas Whittam Smith, who has been given a knighthood

Honoured: the First Church Estates Commissioner, Andreas Whittam Smith, who has been given a knighthood

THE First Church Estates Commissioner, Andreas Whittam Smith CBE, who has held office since 2002, has been appointed a Knight Bachelor in the Queen's Birthday Honours list, announced last Friday. His honour is for public service, particularly to the Church of England.

Among other knighthoods is one for the former Liberal Democrat MP for Bermondsey and Old Southwark, Simon Hughes, who was a minister in the coalition government, but lost his seat in the General Election last month.

Two composers of importance for sacred music, Dr Karl Jenkins CBE, who has set a number of religious texts, and the Roman Catholic composer Dr James MacMillan CBE, who has been outspoken about the quality of liturgical music, besides contributing to the repertoire, also receive knighthoods.

Among honours in the personal gift of the Queen is an LVO for Canon Jonathan Riviere, Rural Dean of Heacham and Rising, who is the Queen's Domestic Chaplain at Sandringham.

The conductor Sir Neville Marriner CBE, who co-founded the Academy of St Martin in the Fields, so named because its first concerts of Baroque string music on authentic instruments were given in the church, is made a Companion of Honour.

Dr Loyd Grossman OBE, is appointed CBE in the Honours list, for his services to heritage. Dr Grossman's wide involvement in heritage matters includes a Fellowship of St Deiniol's Library, Hawarden, and chairmanship of the Churches Conservation Trust.

Also appointed CBE, for services to the Church of England, is Christina Rees, a well-known writer, broadcaster, and public speaker, and a long-serving member of the General Synod. She formerly chaired the campaigning group WATCH (Women and the Church).                          

Bishop Angaelos, the General Bishop of the Coptic Orthodox Church in the UK, is appointed OBE for his services to international religious freedom. He accepted it gratefully, but with, he said, "a sense of sadness that in the 21st century we still need to defend people's God-given rights and freedoms in this way".

Among the other OBEs is the author Karen Armstrong, for services to literature and interfaith dialogue. Many of her books are on comparative religion, and her latest, Fields of Blood: Religion and the history of violence, was published last year.

Also Canon Cynthia Dowdle, Dean of Women's Ministry in Liverpool diocese, for services to gender equality and social inclusion; Jack Hatch, head teacher of St Bede's C of E Primary Academy, Bolton; the biblical textual scholar Professor David Parker, Edward Cadbury Professor of Theology at the University of Birmingham, who is currently working on editions of St John's Gospel; and Professor Susan Piotrowski,  former Vice-chancellor and Emeritus Professor of Canterbury Christ Church University. Both the latter are honoured for services to higher education.

Among the MBEs are Margaret Ball, area manager (Germany) of the Church of England Soldiers', Sailors' and Airmen's Clubs, which runs coffee shops in Paderborn and Bielefeld, is recognised for her services to Armed Forces personnel; and Peter Chapman, a former chorister and lay canon of St Paul's Cathedral, for services to St Paul's and to charity in London;  he is the co-founder of a trust that raised £40 million for the restoration of St Paul's.

After the reinterment of the remains of King Richard III in Leicester Cathedral, there are MBEs for two historians for their services to the exhumation and identification of the king, Dr John Ashdown-Hill and Philippa Langley.

Also the Revd Roger Redding, a retired priest who is Chaplain to the Roma Gypsy and Traveller community, for services to interfaith relations and to the community in the south-west; Garry Reed, head teacher of Swimbridge C of E Primary School, north Devon; Joyce Roberts, who chairs the Liverpool C of E Council for Social Aid, for services to the community, particularly women; Margot Sampson, who chairs the Children's Society's fund-raising committee in Winscombe Somerset (services to children); Roger Speare, chairman of Emmaus Bolton, for services to the community in Bolton; and the late Kate (Coral Mary Patricia) Taylor, a local historian in west Yorkshire, who was a lay canon of Wakefield Cathedral and worked tirelessly for the Chantry Chapel. She died in May, aged 81.

In the Overseas and Diplomatic list, Christopher David Wynn is appointed MBE for services to education and to the Anglican Church in Papua New Guinea; as is the Bishop of Banks & Torres, Vanuatu, in the Church of Melanesia, the Rt Revd Nathan Tome, for services to aviation education, the Church, and community development. In the military list, there is an MBE for Prebendary Karl Freeman, of the Royal Army Chaplains' Department Reserve, who is also Team Rector of Emmanuel, St Paul Efford and St Augustine, Plymouth.

Among those awarded the British Empire Medal is Sister Maureen Greaves CA, for services to the community in North Sheffield, where she is a Church Army evangelist, and her late husband, Alan, was an organist and Reader at St Saviour's, High Green. He was murdered on Christmas Eve in 2012, and Sister Maureen subsequently spoke of her forgiveness for the two men convicted of his murder. "Alan is constantly in my thoughts and I continue to miss the life that we shared together," she said on Saturday. "I am amazed and humbled that the Queen should honour me in this way and I accept it on behalf of both Alan and myself."

Among the others awarded the BEM are Lesley Munt, who has been in charge of the Wednesday Lunch Club at Brockenhurst Parish Church for 27 years, and has served 34,000 lunches to the elderly of the village; Donald Roberts, for services to young people through swimming and to bell-ringing in Torquay, where he has trained more than 100 ringers over the past 60 years, and has shown dedication to Babbacombe Church and St Marychurch; Yvonne Lea Rodgers, for services to the St Stephen's Drop-in Centre, Twickenham; and Jonathan Venner, organist and choirmaster of St Edward the Confessor, Romford, for services to choral music.

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