Special praise for rescue heroes

British entertainer Tom Jones

British entertainer Tom Jones


BRITAIN: The "immense strength of spirit and courage" shown by London transport workers, medics and members of the emergency services who helped in the rescue effort after the July 7th attacks in London dominate the Queen's New Year Honours list published yesterday.

Their actions prevented the death toll from rising above 56 - a figure which included the four terrorists.

"These people showed immense strength of spirit and courage in the face of terrorism on our transport system," said a Downing Street spokeswoman.

The list contains the usual crop of showbusiness personalities, including singer Tom Jones and entertainer Bruce Forsyth, plus honours for the England cricketers to mark their Ashes triumph over the Australians last summer, as well as recognition for Lord Coe and the team which secured the 2012 Olympics for London.

But it is the actions of the July 7th rescuers of the victims of the attacks on the three trains, at Edgware Road, Aldgate and between King's Cross and Russell Square, and the Number 30 bus in Tavistock Place which top this list.

They include: Peter Hendy, (CBE) managing director Surface Transport, Transport for London. Julie Dent (CBE), chief executive South West London Strategic Health Authority. Roy Bishop (OBE), deputy commissioner, London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority.

Maj Muriel McClenahan, (OBE) of the Salvation Army.

Dallas Ariotti (MBE), director of organisational transformation, Guy's and St Thomas's hospitals. David Boyce (MBE) station supervisor, Russell Square. John Boyle (MBE), train operator London Underground. Alan Dell (MBE) network liaison manager, London Buses. Const Deborah Russell-Fenwick (MBE), British Transport Police. William Kilminster (MBE) paramedic London Ambulance Service.

Elsewhere in the list, Tom Jones, the enduring singing phenomenon who progressed from humble beginnings in the Welsh valleys to international acclaim, gets a knighthood.

There is a CBE for the evergreen all-round entertainer Bruce Forsyth (77).

Gordon Ramsay, the celebrity chef notorious for his streams of on-screen expletives, gets an OBE.

Actors Robbie Coltrane, of Cracker and Harry Potter fame, and Vera Drake star Imelda Staunton, the Beverley Sisters and veteran jazz musician John Dankworth also figure among a long list of showbusiness personalities who receive awards.

Vivienne Westwood, the audacious fashion designer and effectively one of the creators of punk, becomes a dame.

Peter Snow, the outgoing so-called "monarch of the election swingometer", gets a CBE. And the Ashes-winning England cricketers are also honoured. There is an OBE for captain Michael Vaughan and some of the squad's management team, while the players get an MBE. - (PA)