The list also includes nurses, plumbers, scientists and many of the region’s other heroes

The British honours system, a means of rewarding individuals' personal bravery, achievement, or service to the UK, has just been announced. This is usually published in June, when the Queen celebrates her official birthday, but was postponed this year so that individuals who played crucial roles in the first months of the coronavirus outbreak could be added.

There were 1495 honours announced this year, some are well-known faces, while others have been quietly and selflessly making a massive difference in their communities. Among all the recent bad news stories, it’s heart-warming to just take a minute to congratulate those individuals from Greater Manchester who made a real difference to their communities. 

People from where we come from don’t get these type of things so we don’t know how to act or behave

One of the most well known names on the list is that of England and Manchester United footballer, Marcus Rashford who has been honoured with an MBE by Her Majesty The Queen for his services to vulnerable children during Covid 19 which involved him successfully petitioning the Prime Minister for an extension to the school meals voucher scheme.

In an interview on BBC Breakfast, Marcus Rashford reflected on the news. He said he’d be taking his mum with him to Buckingham Palace to pick up the award.

“She’s just dead happy and it’s obviously a proud moment for her and it’s all just a little bit strange, you know, people from where we come from don’t get these type of things so we don’t know how to act or behave but it’s just a proud moment for everyone,” Marcus said.

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MBE 🇬🇧 I’m incredibly honoured and humbled. As a young black man from Wythenshawe, never did I think I would be accepting an MBE, never mind an MBE at the age of 22. This is a very special moment for myself and my family, but particularly my mum who is the real deserving recipient of the honour. The fight to protect our most vulnerable children is far from over. I would be doing my community, and the families I have met and spoken with, an injustice if I didn’t use this opportunity to respectfully urge the Prime Minister, who recommended me for this honour, to support our children during the October half term with an extension of the voucher scheme, as the furlough scheme comes to an end and we face increased unemployment. Another sticking plaster, but one that will give the parents of millions of children in the UK just one less thing to worry about. Let’s stand together in saying that no children in the UK should be going to bed hungry. As I have said many times before, no matter your feeling or opinion, not having access to food is NEVER the child’s fault.
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But Rashford, who will turn 23 at the end of this month, has by no means finished his campaign on behalf of children. “It’s a nice moment for me personally but I feel like I’m still at the beginning of the journey that I set out to try and achieve,” he said. “So I think what I would like to do now that I’m in this position is just speak directly to the Prime Minister and really ask for the vouchers to be extended until at least until October half term because I think that’s what the families need. Speaking to them and knowing how much they’ve been helped and how much it’s going to affect them if they don’t have it, that’s got to be my main focus now to get that message across.”

2020 10 12 Councillor Luthfur Rahman
Councillor Luthfur Rahman, OBE

Manchester City Council's Executive Member for Culture, Leisure and Skills, Councillor Luthfur Rahman, has been awarded an OBE. This award comes only months after the councillor was himself hospitalised with Coronavirus at the height of the pandemic.

The award has been made for services to local government in recognition of the Labour member's many achievements since he was first elected as a local councillor in 2008. Luthfur opened his first takeaway in Wilmslow at the age of 17 and continued working in the catering trade for 22 years. He also practised as a qualified mortgage advisor, establishing his own company in 2006. After being re-elected to Longsight ward for the third time in 2016 he took the decision to concentrate full-time on his council role.

During his time as an elected member of the council Luthfur has made his mark in many different areas involving young people, skills, culture, libraries, sports and leisure, as well as race and diversity. He initiated the 'If We Can You Can' campaign to get more people active. Following on from this, the council launched Manchester's 10 year Sports and Physical Activity Strategy. 

Luthfur has been a loud voice in advocating for more diversity in the programmes of the city's cultural institutions, and currently sits on the boards or committees of several cultural organisations including Arts Council North Area Council, Manchester International Festival, and Greater Manchester Arts Centre.  He also sits on the boards or committees of the National Football Museum, Manchester Active, Uprising Greater Manchester, Strategic Education Partnership, and Greater Manchester Skills Board.

He established the first ever Manchester Culture Awards in 2018.  Since cultural venues were forced to close their doors in March, Luthfur has continued to keep pushing for urgent support for the sector to keep it alive, and has overseen the drawing up of a Cultural Recovery Plan for Manchester to help the sector and the city move forwards through the Covid crisis.

"To say I was surprised when I opened the email telling me about the award has to be the understatement of the year,” Councillor Luthfur said. “This is not something I was expecting, and I wasn't at all sure it was something I deserved over anyone else - especially when I look around and see all the incredible things other people do.”

"Being recognised in this way by Her Majesty is a huge honour and one that for me also brings with it an enormous personal responsibility to make sure that I live up to it, that I don't let people down, and that I work even harder to help make a real difference to the lives of everyone living in Manchester."    

OBE’s were also awarded to:

Carol Ann Culley: Deputy chief executive and city treasurer, Manchester City Council, for services to local government.

Paul Anthony Lee: Chairman, Horserace Betting Levy Board. For services to horse racing.

Professor Cheryl Ann Lenney: Chief Nurse, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust, for services to nursing and midwifery.

Clive Allan James Memmott: Chief executive, Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce and lately non-executive director, British Chambers of Commerce, for services to business.

Ali Akbar Mohammed: Founder and trustee, Ansar Finance. For services to finance and charity.

Julie Oldham (pictured above): Head of library and museum services, Bolton council. For services to public libraries.

Sarabjit Singh Purewal: Principal specialist inspector, Health and Safety Executive. For services to health and safety and cyber security.

And Charlotte Helen Ramsden: Strategic director for people, Salford City Council. For services to children in Greater Manchester.

Brian Cox Bbc Credit
Professor Brian Cox was honoured with a CBE BBC

Chadderton-raised TV star and Manchester University professor Brian Cox has been awarded a CBE for services to the promotion of science, which will match the OBE he was also awarded in 2010. He is known for his BBC Two 'Wonders of…' series and has been a contributor to Horizon, as well as appearing on The Jonathan Ross Show, The One Show, The Sky at Night, QI, Blue Peter and more. Professor Cox also co-hosts the annual 'Stargazing Live' broadcast, and BBC Radio 4’s 'The Infinite Monkey Cage' which won a Gold Sony Radio Award in 2011. Sales of his popular science books have exceeded 1.3 million copies. Amanda Jane Melton, from Hale was also awarded a CBE for services to further education.

MBE’s were awarded to: 

Albert Aspen, Bolton: Trustee, Bolton Olympic Wrestling Club. For services to wrestling.

Aurangzeb Farooq, Manchester: Mentor, North West Regional Leadership Group, Mosaic. For services to young people in Manchester.

Gary Frith, Bickershaw: Health and safety advisor, Her Majesty's Prison, Hindley. For services to prison staff, their families and prisoners during Covid-19.

Kathryn Elizabeth Davies (pictured above), Customer resolution investigator at the Co-operative Bank Branch was awarded an MBE for ‘services to the community in Greater Manchester during Covid-19’. Kathryn was recognized for supporting hundreds of customers with their finances, while volunteering over 100 hours of her time to distribute tailored care packages to NHS workers and hospitals across the UK.

“Kathryn's determination and positivity has made a real difference to customers, colleagues and key workers,” said Co-op bank while congratulating her on their Facebook page. 

Diana Hampson has been awarded an MBE for services to higher education and the community in Greater Manchester. She is a chartered surveyor and has been Director of Estates and Facilities since 1997. Diana steered the Directorate through the merger with UMIST in 2004 and has successfully delivered the most ambitious capital build programme in the history of UK Higher Education, creating new high quality facilities worth £650 million on an estate spanning over 900,000sq metres of academic, administrative, commercial and residential accommodation on 711 acres of land, mainly in the City of Manchester but also further afield.

2020 10 12 Gareth Mallion Mbe
Gareth Mallion was rewarded with an MBE for tirelessly working to help set up the nightingale hospital at Manchester Central

Two engineers who work for TalkTalk Business Team were rewarded MBEs for services to Critical National Infrastructure during the Covid-19 response. Peter Harding, from Whitefield, and Andrew Miller were on call ‘day and night’ to ensure hospitals, care homes, surgeries and other critical sites, including the new Nightingale Hospitals, stayed online in the early days of the Covid crisis so they were able to access the broadband connections they required.  

MBE’s were also awarded to Sally Selorm Juliet Penni, Manchester: Barrister at law, Kenworthy Chambers. For services to diversity in the workplace, social mobility and law.

Dr Ibrar Mohammed Majid, Stockport: For services to healthcare and community development in Manchester.

Gareth James Mallion, from Timperley (pictured above): Network Rail employee. For services to the NHS during Covid-19.

Head of the Division of Pharmacy and Optometry, in the School of Health Science, Professor Jayne Lawrence, was awarded an MBE for services to pharmaceutical research. She is a pharmacist and former Royal Pharmaceutical Society’s Chief Scientist. 

2020 10 12 Mbe Pat Mayle Girlguiding
Pat Mayle MBE

A veteran Girl Guide leader from Eccles, Pat Mayle, has been awarded an MBE for her 'Comfort Bags Scheme', bags of toiletries and necessities that can be given to patients and visitors who have to suddenly stay in hospital overnight with little notice. More than 18,000 comfort bags have now been made and distributed by Girlguiding units across the North West. Throughout the Covid-19 crisis, Pat’s network of volunteers delivered 2,600 bags to hospitals over the North West for NHS staff.

Other MBE’s were awarded to: Leon Mundell, Whalley Range: For services to the community in Greater Manchester during the Covid-19 response.

Michele Elizabeth Patricia Nel, Wigan: For services to the community and frontline workers in Wigan during Covid-19.

Dr Helen Louise Sanderson, Stockport: Founder and chief executive, Wellbeing Teams. For services to adult social care.

Qaisra Shahraz, Fallowfield: Founder, curator and executive director, Muslim Arts and Culture Festival. For services to gender equality and cultural learning.

Juliana Mary Taylor, Manchester: Nurse consultant in urology service, Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust. For services to the NHS during Covid-19.

170525 Queen Hospital Manchester Arena Terror Attack
The Queen's birthday honours 2020 was postponed to allow for those who volunteered and went above and beyiond for their communities during lockdown were rewarded

BEMs were awarded to:

Steven Barton, Stalybridge: For services to the community in Tameside during Covid-19.

Tanya Faith Bennett, Stockport: Commissioner, Goyt Division, Girlguides and senior coach, Spartac Gymnastics Club, Ormskirk. For voluntary service to young people in North West England.

Ian Michael Brow, Standish: For voluntary service to the Church Lads' and Church Girls' Brigade in Standish.

Anthony Lee Cocker, Oldham: Plumber, Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust. For services to the NHS during Covid-19.

Lilian Day, Oldham: For services to the community in Royton.

Damian Antony Edwards, Middleton: For services to the community of Alkrington during Covid-19.

Eno-Obong Esin, Denton: Ward clerk, adult critical care services, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust. For services to the NHS during Covid-19.

Andrea Margaret Greenall, Bolton: Health care assistant, Royal Bolton Hospital, Bolton NHS Foundation Trust. For services to the NHS during Covid-19.

Hera Hussain, Chorlton: Founder and chief executive Officer, Chayn. For services to charity.

Malcolm Kilpatrick, Saddleworth: Electrician, Royal Oldham General Hospital. For services to the NHS during Covid-19.

Simon Richard Lea, Stockport: General store manager, Asda Ltd. For services to the Covid-19 response, making sure that the elderly and vulnerable received their shopping during the lockdown period.

Vajid Mahmood, Bury: PPM strategy and implementation lead, NHS England and NHS Improvement. For services to the NHS during Covid-19.

Helen McMahon, Middleton: Home manager, Four Seasons Healthcare. For services to care homes during Covid-19.

Tracey Ann Pearson, Stockport: Senior care worker, Grove Lodge Care Home. For services to care home residents during Covid-19.

Rina Surjan, Oldham: For services to the BAME community in Greater Manchester.

Kirsty Taylor, Wythenshawe: Co-ordinator, Bideford Community Centre. For services to vulnerable families in Wythenshawe during Covid-19.

Margaret Gail Walthall, Heywood: For voluntary service to scouting in Heywood.

Stephen Walthall, Heywood: For voluntary service to scouting in Heywood.

John Williams, Wigan: Constable, Greater Manchester Police. For services to policing and charity.

Marie Zsigmond, Oldham: Midwife for safeguarding, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust. For services to maternity safeguarding in the NHS.

Queen's Police Medal was awarded to Charles David Crichlow: Lately, Constable, Greater Manchester Police.

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