Snow Patrol’s Gary Lightbody and cricketer Eoin Morgan on queen’s honours list
Classical music group The Priests, and members of PSNI included in awards
Gary Lightbody of Snow Patrol with Sara Canning, partner of murdered journalist Lyra McKee, following a three-day peace walk from Belfast to Derry in May. He has been awarded an OBE for services to music and charity in Northern Ireland. Photograph: Liam McBurney/PA Wire.
Snow Patrol frontman Gary Lightbody, singing group The Priests and the Dublin-born cricketer Eoin Morgan have been included in Queen Elizabeth’s New Year honours list.
Close to 100 people from Northern Ireland have been given titles such as officers of the Order of the British Empire (OBEs) and members of the Order of the British Empire (MBEs) but none of them are receiving a knighthood.
Lightbody (43), from Bangor in Co Down, who is singer, songwriter and guitarist with Snow Patrol, was awarded an OBE for services to music and charity in Northern Ireland. The rock band has sold millions of albums since being formed in 1994 and its best known songs include Chasing Cars and Run.
He helped set up Belfast’s Oh Yeah Music Centre, which supports aspiring musicians, and his Lightbody Foundation was established this year to support charities in Northern Ireland dealing with issues such as mental health, depression and youth engagement.
The three members of the classical music group, The Priests, brothers Fr Eugene and Fr Martin O’Hagan, who are from Claudy, Co Derry, and Fr David Delargy from Ballymena, Co Antrim received MBEs, also for services to music and charity in Northern Ireland.
Morgan, from Rush in north Co Dublin, is a former Ireland international who went on to captain England to a first Cricket World Cup title earlier this year. He is being made a commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for his services to cricket.
“I’m very proud to have been awarded a CBE. Winning the World Cup has been a dream come true and the honours and awards that have come since that day at Lord’s really mean a lot to everyone connected with the team,” he said.
“The events of that day at Lord’s were the result of many years of hard work and dedication, and I see this honour — and the honours for my team-mates — as honours for the whole team, for everything they put into winning that tournament and getting over the line.”
Former Northern Ireland soccer international Aaron Hughes, who played with clubs such as Newcastle and Aston Villa during a long career, has been awarded an MBE for services to football. The Cookstown, Co Tyrone native won 112 caps for Northern Ireland.
Michael McKillop, a Paralympic gold-medal winning middle-distance runner from Ballymena, received an MBE for services to disability awareness and athletics.
Cheryl Lamont, chief executive of the Probation Board of Northern Ireland, was awarded a CBE for services to criminal justice. Alastair Hamilton, the recently retired chief executive officer of Invest NI also received a CBE, for services to economic development in Northern Ireland.
Andrew Browne, who was secretary to the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry, was awarded an OBE for services to victims and survivors of abuse.
Four full-time Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) officers were also recognised on the honours list. Det Chief Supt Andrew Freeburn of the crime operations department received an MBE, while Queen’s police medals went to Det Insp David Lowans, Sgt David McIlwaine and Det Sgt Dawn Forsythe.
PSNI reserve constable William Armstrong received a BEM (medallist of the Order of the British Empire) for services to policing. Sonya McMullan, regional services manager of Women’s Aid Northern Ireland, was also awarded a BEM for services to victims of domestic and sexual abuse.
Catholic prison chaplain, Fr Stephen McBrearty received an MBE for services to criminal justice. He said he was “humbled and delighted” to get the award which, he added, “recognises the work of the entire prison chaplaincy in Northern Ireland”.