With this morning’s news bulletins dominated by the publication of the Queen’s New Year Honours List I took a look at some of the names of people who, in the past, have declined an award. Amongst quite a roll-call are David Bowie, the playwright Alan Bennet, scientist Stephen Hawking, John Cleese, Nigella Lawson, Bill Nighy, Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders. Perhaps most appropriate, though is the journalist and presenter of C4 News, Jon Snow, who turned down an OBE – before going on to present a documentary called Secrets of the Honours System!
Also this morning we remembered soul singer Fontella Bass, who passed away on Boxing Day, with her 1965 hit Rescue me. With her death in St Louis, Missouri, Fontella achieved something that few people these days do – she died in the same city she was born in!