New Year’s honours

medalI notice that I will have to wait at least another year to be awarded a gong for me to turn it down. The list of people who have turned down a gong, in history, is not very long. The Wikipedia page on this is as comprehensive as they come (, but my admiration goes in particular to: Alan Bennett (a persistent offender), Michael Foot, David Bowie, Stephen Hawking, L.S. Lowry (declined more honours than anyone else!), J.G. Ballard and Jon Snow (who later did a Channel 4 exposé of the honour system to make sure that he was never offered another one). I trust also there a lot of more admirable anonymous ordinary people who have turned down honours.

This year, it seems, one gets an award for having got a gold medal in the Olympics. Whilst winning an Olympic gold medal is quite an achievement, whether it warrants further recognition is questionable. In the case of Sir Bradley Wiggins who also won the Tour de France – clean of drugs – the receipt even then of yet another award seems excessive. And surely, Sir Bradley, a knighthood is secondary to the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award (can anyone tell me how such a non-award became so ‘important’ and ‘newsworthy’?)

Readers of this blog will know that I have a problem with the awards system in the first place. This year it is even more even further undermined because of Sir Jimmy Savile and now not Sir Fred Goodwin, he of Royal Jimmy_Savile_PICT6249aBank of Scotland notoriety.

It is time to end this nonsense.

Photo of Jimmy Savile source: JMB, Wikipedia

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