THE former chief of staff and strategy at Lambeth Palace, Kay Brock, has been appointed CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for services to the Church of England.
Ms Brock, who retired this year, was appointed by the former Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Williams, in 2012. She was previously chief of staff to six Lord Mayors of London and assistant private secretary to the Queen.
Also appointed CBE was the former Bishop of Leicester, the Rt Revd Timothy Stevens, for services to the C of E and to the community in Leicester. Bishop Stevens announced his retirement in 2014, after 16 years in the post. He was Convener of the Lords Spiritual from November 2009 until May 2015.
Services to education featured strongly in the list. Alice Hudson, executive head teacher of Twyford Church of England Academies Trust, in west London, was appointed Dame (DBE). After graduating from Oxford University she taught English and religious education, before becoming head teacher of Twyford for 11 years.
The philosopher and author Professor Roger Scruton was appointed Knight Bachelor for services to philosophy teaching and public education. In his book Our Church: A personal history of the Church of England (2012) Professor Scruton argues that the Anglican Church remains at the heart of English culture and identity, and of European civilisation.
Also knighted was Professor Stanley Wells, a Shakespeare scholar and honorary president of the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, who spoke at the Church Times Bloxham Festival in February; and Desmond Swayne MP, a prominent member of the group Christians in Parliament.
The Vice Chancellor of Roehampton University, Paul O’Prey, who is a member of the Council of Church Colleges and Universities (CCUC), was appointed CBE for services to higher education and for his literary work on the First World War.
David Fergusson, professor of Divinity at the University of Edinburgh, who has written extensively on the relationship between the Church and society, was appointed OBE for services to education, the arts, and the Church of Scotland.
Among the appointed MBEs was Susan Mitchell, the head teacher of St John Baptist Church in Wales Voluntary Aided High School; and the Premier Christian Radio presenter the Revd Cindy Kent, for services to religious broadcasting.
The charity sector was also recognised. Catherine Johnstone, the former chair of Samaritans, was appointed CBE for services to suicide prevention; a former churchwarden of Holy Trinity, Guernsey, Celia Allen, was awarded the MBE for her work with Samaritans, and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.
Chaplains honoured included the Revd Monica Newsome of HM Prisons Swinfen Hall, who received an MBE for HM Prison Service and voluntary services to the community in Lichfield, Staffordshire; and Johh Chisholm, the organist and lay Chaplain of the Cathedral of the Isles, Millport, on Great Cumbrae, who was awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to music and culture.
Also awarded the BEM were Dr Geoffrey Gibbons, the organist at St Tudy, Cornwall; David Macken, who was recognised for leading a group of volunteers to keep the churchyard of St Peter’s in Cockett, Swansea, clean for 30 years; and the Rector of Dungiven and Bovevagh in the Church of Ireland, the Revd David McBeth, for his charity and community work.
Fay Wilson-Rudd received the BEM for her work as the mental-health adviser for the diocese of Bath & Wells.
Other appointed MBEs were David Ashton, who has been churchwarden at St James Chapelthorpe, West Yorkshire, since 1968, and who is a member of the deanery synod, and Michael Fisher for his work for the Norfolk Churches Trust.
Among those honoured for their interfaith work was Yaqub Masih, a lay canon of Wakefield Cathedral, who was appointed MBE for services to “community cohesion and interfaith relations” in West Yorkshire.
The Vicar of St Gabriel’s Huyton, Canon Malcolm Rogers, received his MBE for services to “community cohesion” in Knowsley, Merseyside. Canon Rogers became a campaigner against hate-crime after a young, black member of his church, Anthony Walker, was murdered in a racist attack (News, 5 August 2005).
The arts were also celebrated. The singer Dame Vera Lynn received a Member of the Order of the Companions of Honour for services to entertainment and charity. She said: “I felt very greatly honoured to be given a Damehood and never expected to receive anything else.”
The actress Penelope Wilton, who will play the Queen in the forthcoming Steven Spielberg adaption of Roald Dahl’s The BFG, was made a Dame.
Musicians honoured included the rock singer Rod Stewart, who thanked the Queen for the “monumental” honour of being knighted for services to music and charity. The chair of the Royal Opera House and Aldeburgh Festival, Simon Robey, was also knighted.
The television presenters Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly became OBEs, alongside the actor Brian Blessed and the trumpeter Alison Balsom. The England Cricket captain Alistair Cook, already an MBE, was appointed CBE.
Elsewhere, the astronaut Tim Peake became the first person to be named in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list while in space when he was made a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George for services to space research and scientific education.
Of the 1149 people who received an award, 47 per cent (538) are women and 8.2 per cent (90) come from a black, Asian, and minority ethnic (BAME) background — the largest number of BAME recipients ever to appear in an honours list.