Published: 05 January 2012
by TOM FOOT
THE Queen’s eye surgeon – a NHS consultant who holds one of the most popular clinics at the Royal Free Hospital in Hampstead – has been awarded a special personal honour from Buckingham Palace.
Jonathan Jagger receives the Lieutenant of the Royal Victoria Order.
The Order was set up by Queen Victoria in 1896 as a way of recognising personal service.
Mr Jagger, who lives in Wandsworth, has been the Queen’s oculist for a decade and consultant ophthalmologist at the Royal Free since 1989.
Ophthalmologists diagnose and treat all problems that occur within two centimetres of the pupil.
He said: “It’s a great honour to serve the Queen and I’m very pleased to have been chosen to receive this award.
It’s especially humbling as the Queen personally chooses who she would like to receive this honour.”
Professor Mark Pepys, also on the Royal Free staff, receives a knighthood.
Professor Pepys is director of the Wolfson Drug Discovery Unit at the UCL Centre for Amyloidosis and Acute Phase Proteins at the Pond Street hospital.
Former Camden Council chief executive Moira Gibb has been made a dame.
She left the council at Christmas after eight years at the helm.
There was also a Knight Grand Cross of the Order of British Empire for Helene Hayman, House of Lords speaker and former Labour MP who went on to become Baroness Hayman of Dartmouth Park.
She is a former chairwoman of Whittington Hospital in Highgate.
Belsize Park actress Helena Bonham Carter, star of Sweeney Todd and Charlie and The Chocolate Factory, was given a CBE.
Chief executive of the restored Roundhouse in Chalk Farm, Marcus Davey, has received an OBE for services to drama.
He said: “I am being recognised as the person at the top of the organisation.
The new Roundhouse opened five years ago, but before that – 10 years ago, even 15 years ago – people would not have thought we would have been doing what we are doing today.”
Of his honour, he said: “I thought it was a hoax until I saw it on BBC.”
Mr Davey spoke frankly about the punishments handed out following the August riots, saying that some young people had been left with “very little hope”.
He added: “We need to help young, disadvantaged people slowly move onto a path of responsibility.
Every creative decision is a leap into that responsibility.
It was the waste of energy and potential that was so sad.”
Looking ahead to the year at the Roundhouse, he said: “There are lots of great things coming up: circus, Shakespeare, a range of other gigs and shows and continuing our work with young people.
But we are at the beginning of a year that is going to be ultra challenging financially.”
Professor Clare Fowler, a consultant at the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery in Queen Square, Bloomsbury, was awarded a CBE for services to uroneurology.
She established a specialist unit in 1987 for patients with urological problems and sexual dysfunction as a consequence of neurological disease.
In 1985, a syndrome was named after her – Fowler’s Syndrome – after she discovered why people suffer from urinary retention.
She said: “I will be accepting the award on behalf of all the nurses and doctors who have helped me care for patients and build up the department of uro-neurology.
What is more, I know that the development of this new neurological speciality would not have been possible at any other hospital and I am grateful for the vision of the National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery and the years of support from UCLH.”
A CBE was awarded to philanthropic art expert Dr Frederick Mulder, who lives in Belsize Park, and an MBE to Auschwitz survivor Eva Schloss, whose experience is part of the play And Then They Came For Me.
She is a founding trustee of the Anne Frank Trust UK.
A composer and conductor who has led a world-famous Highgate choir for a quarter of a century was awarded an OBE.
The Rev Ronald Corp, 61, has been working with Highgate Choral Society since 1985.
Three years later he founded the New London Orchestra, which now regularly performs at the BBC Proms.
He said: “I’m very honoured and touched.
It is very nice to be honoured for what one does.
We all do these things not for any real reward, especially when I am working for the kids and for the Musicians Benevolent Fund.
It was a very nice surprise.”
Highgate Choral Society has performed, under his leadership, at the South Bank and St Paul’s Cathedral and practises each Monday night at Channing School.
He said: “I’ve loved working with them because they are a very able amateur choir who are very enthusiastic and now over 200 strong.
We have built up the choir to a very high standard with high ambitions and aspirations in Highgate but also across London.”
Mr Corp is an acclaimed composer who worked for the BBC for many years.
He lived in Aberdare Road, West Hampstead, until he recently moved to Essex, and now has a Covent Garden flat as his London base.
There was an MBE for watercolourist Jo Weir, who has lived in Covent Garden for nearly 30 years.
She is considered adept at navigating the “minefield” of local government in Camden and Westminster through her role as chair of the Covent Garden Community Association.
Ms Weir said she hoped the gong would “help put Covent Garden on the map”.
She said: “I am flattered and amazed, and I am very embarrassed because it is something that can only come about by joint work and operations by everybody else in the community.”
She said she had received a letter but thought it was a prank.
Then her stepdaughter rang her after midnight.
“I thought she was in an accident because she was screaming down the phone.
I really was worried because she is usually in bed at about 10pm.
She said ‘Congratulations’ and I said: ‘What on earth are you talking about?’
I couldn’t connect, and why would I? I just couldn’t believe it.”
Ms Weir said that, despite Covent Garden’s central location, the area could be overlooked as it fell between two boroughs.
“Years ago we made representations to the Boundary Commission,” she said.
“We really gave them a tough time because it didn’t make any sense to have that boundary down the middle.
But Westminster threatened to close all its social housing on the Camden side.
I can't remember what Camden’s threat was, but both didn’t want to lose their slice of the pie.
It was to do with what they gained from business rates, which you can understand, but it does make it difficult for the people living here because you have to deal with two sets of everything.”