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article imageActors and sports stars awarded in Queen's Birthday Honours

By Tim Sandle     Jun 14, 2013 in Entertainment
The traditional 'birthday honours', bestowed by Queen Elizabeth each June, have seen actors and sports personalities dominate the list.
The two headline names from the acting world to receive honours are from the popular 1980s sit-com Blackadder. The Queen has awarded actor Tony Robinson a knighthood and awarded his co-star Rowan Atkinson a CBE.
A total of 1,180 people are named on the Birthday Honours list. The British honors system is made up of awards of different rank, each with its own acronym. At the top is being made a Companion or Dame, this is followed by knighthoods, then, in the following order, the CBE (Commander of the British Empire), OBE (Order of the British Empire), MBE (Member of the British Empire) and BEM (British Empire Medal). Whilst the terminology of 'Empire' is somewhat antiquated, the awards are a way for the British government and the Crown to recognize its most outstanding citizens of the time. Awards are made twice per year: in the summer as the Queen's Birthday Honors and for the New Year (announced on December 31).
Other knighthoods include sculptor Anish Kapoor and former secretary general of the main trade union body in the U.K., the TUC, Brendan Barber.
In terms of CBEs, in addition to Atkinson, an award has been given to Thomas Heatherwick, the designer behind the London Olympic Games cauldron.
Next down in the rung of the honours 'class system', comes the OBE. This has been awarded to broadcaster Clare Balding, actor,golfer Paul Lawrie, Red Bull Formula One team principal Christian Horner and novelist Jackie Collins.
In terms of the next tier of the somewhat archaic honours system is the MBE. Here awards have been dolled out to singers Adele and P.J. Harvey. In this group the award has also been given to comedian Rob Brydon. Other MBEs have been given to singer and broadcaster Aled Jones, director and playwright David Haig and Chocolat author Joanne Harris.
In addition to the famous, numerous awards were made to charity workers, for which the highest honor is the relatively new award of British Empire Medal. Awards were also made to government officials and politicians.
This article has only featured the main highlights. The full list has been published by the U.K. government.
The Digital Journal previous reported on the 2012 Birthday honours and on the 2013 New Year honours. Noticeably more awards have been made for 2013 compared with 2012.
More about Queen elizabeth II, birthday honours, Obe, Mbe
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