Queen’s Birthday Honours: Miner’s strike stalwart knighted

Former MP David Hamilton. Picture: Julie Bull

Former MP David Hamilton. Picture: Julie Bull

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MIDLOTHIAN’S last miner-MP, a mother who launched Scotland’s first beach wheelchair scheme for disabled people and a D-Day veteran who helped liberate towns and villages in France are among those honoured in today’s Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Former Labour MP David Hamilton, who stepped down at last year’s general election after 14 years, is knighted for political and parliamentary service.

During the 1984-85 miners’ strike, he was arrested for alleged assault and spent two months in jail on remand before being cleared. He still lost his job and was blacklisted, like many other strikers.

He was elected to Westminster in 2001 and fought in parliament to win compensation for former miners suffering from work-related medical conditions, and also served as a Labour whip.

Midlothian had been represented since the Second World War by a long line of MPs from a mining background, but with the industry in decline, Mr Hamilton was the last of his kind.

He said he was “very honoured” to receive the knighthood. “I don’t know anyone who has received a knighthood,” he said.

“I think it’s because of my contribution to the mining industry and community, like the compensation deal we were able to secure when Gordon Brown was prime minister – and thousands of ex-miners have benefited from that.

“It’s a recognition of that, not me personally.”

Now he will have to get used to people calling him “Sir David” – but he said: “I think they’ll call me a lot more than that.”

Mr Hamilton is said to have been nominated for the knighthood by UK Labour leader ­Jeremy Corbyn.

Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale said: “David Hamilton is one of the most respected figures in our party and wider movement. As a miner he stood firm against Thatcherism and he never forgot those with whom he stood shoulder to shoulder in the 1980s.”

Alison Brown, from North Berwick, has been awarded the British Empire Medal for services to people with disabilities after she joined forces with Jackie Tagg to launch the Beach Wheelchair Project.

Ms Brown’s son Ethan, aged seven, has brittle bone disease and his need to use a wheelchair made it impossible for him to go on the beach. The beach wheelchairs are now available at North Berwick for anyone with disabilities.

D-Day veteran Dr Tom Renouf, from Musselburgh, who fought in the 51st Highland Division, has already been awarded France’s highest military honour, the Legion d’Honneur for his bravery during the liberation of towns and villages across France in 1944.

Now he has also been made an MBE for services to armed forces veterans.

Tennis coach Leon Smith, who captained the Great Britain team which won the 2015 Davis Cup, receives an OBE.

He also coached several Scotland junior players, including Andy Murray, whom he worked with from age 11 to 15.

Married with three children, he led Great Britain to its first Davis Cup victory since 1936.

Meanwhile, a senior lecturer at Edinburgh Napier University is awarded an MBE for services to research into exercise and cancer survivorship.

Dr Anna Campbell, 57, has worked on the physical and psychological benefits of staying active after a cancer diagnosis – and put her research into practice, making exercise DVDs for cancer survivors and setting up the first free community-based exercise programme in the UK.

She said: “I have had the privilege of working directly with over 400 cancer patients and survivors to provide the right advice and assistance to help them find the appropriate type of activity to suit their current situation. I love my work so much as I see and hear about the benefits every day.”

Edinburgh-based composer and retired teacher John McLeod has been recognised with a CBE for his services to music. He was director of music at Merchiston Castle School for 11 years before holding a lectureship at Edinburgh Napier University.

Leading organist John Kitchen receives an MBE. Dr Kitchen was a senior lecturer in music at Edinburgh University for 27 years, retiring in 2014.

He is still university organist, director of the Edinburgh University Singers, and Edinburgh City Organist with duties at the Usher Hall.

EDINBURGH AND LOTHIANS WINNERS IN FULL

Knighthood

• David Hamilton. For political and parliamentary service.

CBE

• Professor Charles Adrian Jeffery, professor of politics, University of Edinburgh and lately director, Future of the UK and Scotland Research Programme, ESRC. For services to the social sciences.

• Dr Brian Andrew Lang, FRSE chairman, Royal Scottish National Orchestra. For services to the arts, heritage and education.

• John McLeod, composer and conductor. For services to music.

OBE

• Professor June Andrews, lately director, The Dementia Services Development Centre, University of Stirling. For services to people with dementia.

• Jacqueline Drinkwater, lately national chair, National Day Nurseries Association Scotland. For services to pre-school education.

• Professor David Alexander Syme Fergusson, FBA FRSE, professor of divinity, University of Edinburgh. For services to education, the arts and the Church of Scotland.

• Professor Clifford Bertram Hague, Emeritus Professor, School of Energy, Geoscience, Infrastructure and Society, Heriot-Watt University. For services to planning.

• Mhairi Jayne Harrington, principal and chief executive, West Lothian College. For services to education.

• David Ronald Hanker Hope-Jones, principal officer, Scottish Malawi Partnership. For services to international development.

• John Weir Mundell, chief executive, Inverclyde Council. For services to local government.

• Leon Smith, captain, Davis Cup Team. For services to tennis.

• Shirley Louise Spear, lately co-owner of Three Chimneys restaurant, Skye. For services to the food and drink industry in Scotland.

MBE

• Dr Kathleen Frances Byrne, lately commissioner, Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland. For services to heritage information.

• Dr John Philip Kitchen. For services to music.

• Maria Macnamara, founder, Smalls for All. For services to charity and women’s health in Africa.

• Linda Susan McClelland, Playfair Education Co-ordinator, National Galleries of Scotland. For services to art education in Scotland.

• Joan Elizabeth Melville, personal secretary to the chairman, chief executive and commissioners, Scottish Law Commission. For services to law and order.

• Sylvia Irene Paton, lately PA to deputy director, child and maternal health, Scottish Government. For services to healthcare and charitable services.

• Dr Thomas Joseph Renouf, secretary, 51st Highland Division Veterans Association. For services to Armed Forces veterans.

• Muriel Rose Romanes (pictured), lately artistic director, Stellar Quines. For services to drama.

• Miss Christeen Erica Smith, senior clinical nurse specialist, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh. For services to stoma patients.

• Dr Martin Smith, principal geologist, British Geological Survey and director, Global Geoscience Development. For services to geological science.

• Professor Pamela Ann Smith, Professorial Fellow, University of Edinburgh. For services to nursing and nurse education.

• Flora Margaret Walker, president, Lothian Branch, British Red Cross. For voluntary service to first aid, skin camouflage and fundraising.

BEM

• Alison Brown co-founder, Beach Wheelchairs, North Berwick. For services to people with disabilities.

• Anthony Garn, garden supervisor, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. For services to horticulture in Scotland.

• Susan Jill Gregory. For services to the health and fitness of older people in Edinburgh.

• Kathleen Haddow, volunteer adviser, Gorgie Citizens’ Advice Bureau. For services to the community in Edinburgh.

• Dr Sharon Hannah, senior laboratory manager and business manager, University of Edinburgh. For services to medical research.

• Michele Marron, lately director of operations, National Institute for Medical Research. For services to biomedical sciences.

ian.swanson@edinburghnews.com