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Church educators score well on Birthday Honours

17 June 2016


For services to the Church and to the community in Leicester: the Rt Revd Timothy Stevens

For services to the Church and to the community in Leicester: the Rt Revd Timothy Stevens

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 DBE. After graduating from the University of Oxford, she taught English and religious educa­tion, before becom­ing head teacher of Twyford C of E High School 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 were 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 member of the group Christians in Parliament.

The Vice Chancellor of the University of Roehampton University, Professor Paul O’Prey, who is a member of the Council of Church Colleges and Universities, was appointed CBE for services to higher education and for his literary work on the First World War.

Professor David Fergusson, Pro­fessor of Divinity at the Univer­sity of Edinburgh, who has written on the relation­ship between the Church and society, was appointed OBE for services to education, the arts, and the Church of Scotland.

Among the MBEs were Dr 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 well represented in the list. Catherine Johnstone, the former chief execut­ive 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, formerly Chaplain of HM Prison Swinfen Hall, who is apointed MBE for services to HM Prison Service and voluntary ser­vices to the community in Lichfield, Staffordshire; and Alastair John 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 of St Tudy’s, Cornwall; David Macken, who was recognised for leading a group of volunteers to keep the churchyard of St Peter’s, Cockett, in Swansea, clean for 30 years; and the Revd David McBeth, Rector of Dungiven and Bovevagh in the Church of Ireland, for his charity and community work.

Fay Wilson-Rudd receives the BEM for her work as the mental-health adviser for the diocese of Bath & Wells.

Other MBEs are David Ashton, who has been churchwarden of St James’s, Chapel­thorpe, in 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 Quarry, Canon Malcolm Rogers, is appointed 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 becomes a Member of the Order of the Com­panions of Honour for services to entertainment and charity.

The actress Penelope Wilton, who will play the Queen in the forth­coming Steven Spielberg adapta­tion of Roald Dahl’s The BFG, was appointed DBE.

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.

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