Who deserves an honour next? You decide…

Anne Paterson and her husband John were delighted the Holyrood ceremony was hosted by HRH The Princess Royal

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Local heroes recognised in the Queen’s Honours Lists so far are just ‘the tip the iceberg’, said Argyll’s Lord-Lieutenant, inviting more nominations for people who deserve a gong.

‘There are a lot of unrecognised heroes in the community and I would like to encourage people to nominate them for an honour,’ said Mrs Jane MacLeod, a Lochgilphead solicitor who succeeded Patrick Stewart CVO MBE as Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant for Argyll and Bute in 2020.

Jane MacLeod, Lord-Lieutenant of Argyll and Bute.
Jane MacLeod, Lord-Lieutenant of Argyll and Bute.

‘Last year, we did quite well in the Queen’s Birthday Honours, but that is the tip of the iceberg,’ she said. ‘We have so many people in so many walks of life in Argyll who deserve an honour, but nobody has nominated them.

‘There are so many cooks in our schools, so many people who work for the local authority that keep our landscapes looking good, so many people working on our ferries, keeping our essential services going, and we have so many worthy charities.

‘Right now, the Cabinet Office are encouraging us to nominate people who went above and beyond during the pandemic.

‘The Lieutenancy does not know everybody in Argyll and Bute, the local authority does not know everybody in Argyll and Bute. It is up to you. Anybody can nominate somebody for an honour.’

Asked who qualifies for an honour, the Lord-Lieutenant replied: ‘Somebody who has dedicated a huge amount of their time and lives to helping others.

‘It is quite a straightforward procedure. There is an online form. It is better if there are letters of support, but it is not essential. If the online form can be submitted through me, it hopefully will help.’

Nominations are submitted to the Cabinet Office’s Honours and Appointments Secretariat, which oversees the honours system. The suitability of nominees is then established through ‘merit’ and ‘probity and propriety’ checks.

The process can take 12 to 18 months before the recommendations are passed on to the Prime Minister and, ultimately, the Queen for approval. Honours are announced twice a year – at new year and in June on the Queen’s official birthday.

The most senior rank of Most Excellent Order of the British Empire are a Knighthood or Damehood, followed by Commander of the British Empire (CBE), Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE), Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE), and British Empire Medal (BEM).

In January Oban’s doyenne of rugby Dee Bradbury, the first female President of the Scottish Rugby Union, and a founder of the Oban Lorne RFC women’s team, received her OBE from Scottish Rugby’s patron, HRH The Princess Royal at a ceremony in the Palace of Holyroodhouse.

Princess Anne also presented Anne Paterson, Argyll and Bute Council’s former chief education officer, with an OBE for services to education over her 39-year career, starting as a teacher at Oban’s Park Primary School.

Keith Rutherford

Last year Keith Rutherford, Postmaster at Colonsay Post Office, received a British Empire Medal, alongside Christine Campbell, a scientist at the Dunbeg-based Scottish Association for Marine Science (SAMS), whose contribution to its Culture Collection of Algae and Protozoa was recognised with an MBE.