Monty Python star Michael Palin knighted in New Year Honours

Actor and TV presenter Michael Palin has been knighted in the Queen’s New Year Honour List, while model Twiggy has been made a dame. There just two of the familiar faces been recognised for their work alongside hundreds of everyday Britons.

Sir Michael Palin was recognised for his services to travel, culture and geography. Over the last thirty years he has written numerous books and created many TV series about travel and culture. His most recent work was about North Korea. He is the first member of the Monty Python comedy team to be knighted.

Pallin said his work had taught him the importance of trying to understand another person;s point of view.

“That exposure to travellers has taught me a lot about the importance of understanding other people’s points of view and learning from other people’s lives and other people’s cultures, as well as them learning from ours.” he said.

Twiggy, the model who was the face of London’s Swinging 60’s, was made a dame for her services to fashion, charity and the arts.  Dame Lesley Lawson as she’ll be formally known as, gained her nickname because of her thin figure. She has gone on to have a successful acting career and recorded many music albums and created her own fashion line.

Other famous faces being honoured include actor Sophie Okonedo who starred in the film Hotel Rwanda and the British series Undercover. Okonedo also appeared in the Australian TV production The Slap. Okonedo was made a Commander of the British Empire (CBE).

Author Margaret Atwood, who write the novel The Handmaid’s Tale, became a member of the Companions of Honour. Pink Floyd drummer  Nick Mason was awarded a CBE.

Actor Thandie Newton was awarded a OBE for her work which included the TV series Westworld, Line of Duty and the film Crash. Newton’s early career break was in the Australian film Flirting. 

Director Christopher Nolan was awarded a CBE, while actor Jim Carter who plays butler Mr Carson in the series Downton Abbey was given an OBE.

Overall, 1,148 people are on the main honours list. Some 70% of recipients are recognised for work in their community and 47% of the total are women.

OIP Staff


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