Entrepreneur Jo Malone has said her success is down to making “people smile and feel good” as she was made a CBE by the Prince of Wales.
The businesswoman who created her popular eponymous fragrance brand before selling it to Estee Lauder, also confessed her acute sense of smell had earned her the nickname “bloodhound”.
Speaking after the Buckingham Palace investiture ceremony she said: “Sitting there as a council estate girl in the ballroom, it was a really lovely moment.”
Ms Malone created her business empire after growing up on a council estate and leaving school aged 15 without qualifications.
Asked about the secret of her success she replied: “I think I make people smile and feel good and I think people love connecting with that sort of story of creativity and entrepreneurialism, it’s watching someone fulfil their dreams.”
After selling her brand she went on to start a new venture Jo Loves, to fulfil her craving to create new fragrances.
She said: “I missed working, I’m a girl that likes to be busy, so I started all over again and created Jo Loves.
“It’s a fragrance brand, I missed creating fragrances, it’s the only thing I can do really brilliantly so I went back and started again from my kitchen table, four plastic jugs to see if I could do it again.”
Speaking about her brief chat with the prince, who turned 70 on Wednesday, she said: “I did say ‘happy birthday’ and he said ‘well done’ and ‘congratulations’ and ‘here we are again’, I’ve met him many times before when he’s been doing his charity work, he does an incredible job.”
Television historian Lucy Worsley, chief curator for Historical Royal Palaces, was awarded an OBE for services to history and heritage during the ceremony.
She has presented a string of history programmes on everything from operas and Jane Austen to the six wives of Henry VIII.
She confessed that she enjoys “dressing up” for her programmes exploring the nation’s past or important figures but there was a serious point.
Speaking after the ceremony she said: “For me the most important thing that you learn from studying history is that things aren’t always going to be the same, they’re going to change.
“I think my job is, and this is going to sound a bit grandiloquent, to try to make the world a bit of a better place.”