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In June 2017, it was announced that Paul McCartney would be made Companion Of Honour, as part of the Queen’s Birthday Honours list. On this day was the official ceremony at Buckingham Palace.
I see this as a huge honour for me and my family and I think of how proud my Liverpool mum and dad would have been to see this.Paul McCartney
From NME, May 4, 2018:
Paul McCartney has been made a Companion Of Honour for his contribution to music.
The Beatles star received the honour 21 years after he was knighted by the Queen. Until earlier this year, he was the only member of the influential band to be given a knighthood. Drummer Ringo Starr was granted the same status in the 2018 New Year’s Honours list.
McCartney picked up his medal from Buckingham Palace earlier today (May 4) with wife Nancy Shevell. He is only one of a few musicians to receive the honour, including Vera Lynn and opera singer Janet Baker. Other recipients include Stephen Hawking, Judi Dench, and J.K. Rowling.
[…] McCartney was announced to be receiving the honour in last year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours list. “I’m very happy about this huge honour and with the news coming on my birthday weekend and Father’s Day it makes it colossal!” the musician said in a statement at the time. […]
The Order of the Companions of Honour is an order of the Commonwealth realms. It was founded on 4 June 1917 by King George V as a reward for outstanding achievements and is “conferred upon a limited number of persons for whom this special distinction seems to be the most appropriate form of recognition, constituting an honour disassociated either from the acceptance of title or the classification of merit.“
Founded on the same date as the Order of the British Empire, it is sometimes regarded as the junior order to the Order of Merit. Now described as “awarded for having a major contribution to the arts, science, medicine, or government lasting over a long period of time“, the first recipients were all decorated for “services in connection with the war” and were listed in The London Gazette. […] The order consists of the Sovereign and a maximum 65 members. […]
Because of my respect and love for the Queen and her fabulous sense of humour when I was given the Companion of Honour medal I shook her hand, leaned in and said, ‘We have got to stop meeting like this,’ to which she giggled slightly and got on with the ceremony. I did wonder if I was a bit too cheeky after saying this, after all this was The Queen, but I have a feeling she didn’t mind.Paul McCartney – From paulmccartney.com, September 8, 2022
Last updated on September 17, 2022