Brian May, Denise Lewis, Grayson Perry And Rachel Riley Among Stars Recognised In 2023 New Year Honours List
The celebrities and public figures recognised on the New Year Honours list for 2023 have been announced.
The annual list recognises the incredible public service of individuals from across the UK, including many notable names from the worlds of entertainment and sport.
Olympic gold medallist Denise Lewis has received a damehood for services to sport.
There are knighthoods for Queen’s Brian May for services to music and charity as well as artist Grayson Perry for services to the arts.
Speaking about his knighthood, the Queen musician said: “I don’t think I expected it because I haven’t been conducting the kind of life which I thought would lead to a knighthood – I’ve been quite vociferous in criticising recent Governments for a start.
“So I imagined that I was on the wrong side for all that stuff. It’s a nice surprise to have this honour put upon me.”
(L-R) Brian May and Grayson Perry
He continued: “I also think it comes with a responsibility to continue to behave in a way which benefits the country and the rest of the population here and the world as well.
“But I take this responsibility quite seriously anyway so it’s an encouragement to seek a good place and for everybody in the world.”
Key members of the England Lionesses football team are also honoured after their outstanding performance at this summer’s Euros.
Squad captain Leah Williamson receives an OBE, while star player Lucy Bronze, golden boot Beth Mead, and England women’s top international goal scorer Ellen White are all awarded MBEs.
England lift the Euros trophy during the UEFA Women's Euro England 2022 final match between England and Germany at Wembley Stadium on July 31, 2022.
Saxophonist and broadcaster YolanDa Brown said she is “excited and honoured” to have been made an OBE in the New Year Honours list.
“Being an independent artist to start out with and really building a career that there was no blueprint for,” she said.
“To some people it didn’t make sense why I was doing so many different things but it’s lovely to know that that recognition has come across the board.
“That is me really, and I can hope to continue to do it.”
TV presenter Anne Diamond, who campaigned to stop cot death, has described being made an OBE as the “crowning achievement” for all those who helped her.
The broadcaster, 68, who has been named in the New Year Honours for services to public health and charity, dedicated the achievement to her late son Sebastian.
Elsewhere there was an OBE for This Is England and Line Of Duty star Stephen Graham.
The actor said he shares his OBE with his “incredible warrior” mother, who he revealed had died “a few days ago”.
Homeland star David Harewoodhas also been honoured with an OBE for services to drama and charity after he became a prominent voice for mental health support and against racism.
The actor told his Instagram followers on Saturday that it is “one of those days” when the “ground shifts” beneath him as he combines the different elements of his black British identity.
CBEs go to former footballer Pat Jennings for his services to football and charity and also to Oscar-nominated composer George Fenton.
Among those awarded MBEs include Countdown star’s Rachel Riley for services to holocaust education.
In a tweet, the self-confessed “maths geek” said she shared her award with the “many people who also dedicate their time and energy to fighting anti-Jewish racism.”
Incredibly proud to have just been awarded an MBE for services to Holocaust education.
Grateful to everyone who has sent well wishes and support over the years.
This is very much shared with so many people who also dedicate their time and energy to fighting anti-Jewish racism. pic.twitter.com/vk0iNBZeQk
— Rachel Riley 💙 (@RachelRileyRR) December 30, 2022
Former professional footballer and now sports pundit Chris Kamara has also been made an MBE.
The 65-year-old, who is now a regular guest on Steph’s Packed Lunch, played for nine English professional clubs in a career spanning 20 years, he is recognised for his services to football, charity and anti-racism.
Janet Kay, who stormed the charts with the 1970s hit Silly Games, has also been made an MBE for services to music, along with comedian Frank Skinner and actor Cleo Sylvestre.
On receiving his MBE, Fran joked: “Well, to be honest, I haven’t told anyone at all, even those closest to me, because I still thought there might be some sort of administrative error.
“But I think it’s brilliant. I deal mainly in laughs and applause and they disappear into the air quite quickly.
“So getting a proper medal that you can hold on to and polish regularly feels (it) has given my career a sense of permanence that I like.”
DJ Spoony has dedicated his British Empire Medal (BEM) to his community and late mother, who taught him to express himself and “gave me rhythm”.
The DJ and presenter has been recognised for his services to charity through music during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Here are the stars from the worlds of entertainment, sports and the arts who have been recognised on this year’s list:
Denise Lewis (Olympic gold medalist and President, Commonwealth Games
England, services to Sport)
John Akomfrah (visual artist, services to the arts)
Grayson Perry (artist, services to the arts)
Brian May (Queen guitarist who once told you to shut the fuck up, services to music and charity)
Luke Rittner (CEO of Royal Academy of Dance, services to dance and the arts)
Sonia Friedman (theatre producer, services to theatre)
George Fenton (Oscar-nominated composer, services to music)
Pat Jennings (footballer, services to association football and charity)
YolanDa Brown (saxophonist, services to music, music education and broadcasting)
Anne Diamond, (TV presenter, charity campaigner, services to cot death campaigning)
Stephen Graham (actor, services to drama)
David Harewood (actor services to drama and charity)
Sophie Ingle (captain of Wales women’s football team, services to association football)
Philip Edgar-Jones (director of Sky Arts, for services to the arts and television)
David Sutherland (The Bean illustrator, services to illustration)
Janet Bogle (actor and singer, services to music)
Lucia Bronze (Lioness, services to association football)
Frank Skinner (comedian, services to entertainment)
Ellen Convery (Lioness, services to association football)
Lizzie Deignan (Olympian, services to cycling)
Rachel De-lahay (playwright, services to drama)
Chris Kamara (services to association football, anti-racism and charity)
Kim Little (Scottish footballer, services to association football)
Beth Mead (lioness, services to association football)
Cleo Sylvestre (actor, services to drama and charity)
Christine Rice (opera singer, services to opera)
Rachel Riley (TV presenter, services to holocaust education)
Andrew Robertson (Scottish footballer, services to association football, charity and young people)
Jawahir Roble (referee, services to association football)
Francesca Simon (Horrid Henry author, services to literature)