Bear Grylls shares honour with Scout volunteers as he is made an OBE

Bear Grylls said he shares his honour with Scout volunteers around the country as he is made an OBE.

The adventurer and television star, who is also chief scout, is recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for services to young people, the media and charity .

He said: “This really is a huge honour and it’s something, if I’m honest, that I never expected to happen.

The Duchess of Cambridge with Bear Grylls
The Duchess of Cambridge with Bear Grylls

“But I really do feel it’s a team effort, this award is for every one of those incredible Scout volunteers.

“We now have over half a million Scouts and volunteers in this country who give up so much of their time and energy to help young people and this award is for you guys, so if you’re a Scout volunteer, congratulations, we share this one together.”

Grylls, 44, whose real name is Edward, had a hunger to explore from a young age.

The son of politician and former Royal Marine Commando Mickey Grylls, he was nicknamed Bear by his sister when he was one week old.

Educated at Eton, his father encouraged him to become a keen climber and sailor and as a youngster he helped found the school’s first mountaineering club.

He still attributes his love of adventure to that time spent with his father.

Grylls served for three years as a Trooper in 21st Regiment SAS, part of the UK Special Forces Reserve, where he was trained in combat survival, demolitions and close quarter fighting, before he climbed Mount Everest at the age of 23 and guided a team circumnavigating the British Isles on jetskis.

Between 2001 and 2003 he guided a team on an unassisted crossing of the North Atlantic in an open rigid inflatable boat and in 2005 helped set a world record for the highest open-air formal dinner party, held under a hot air balloon at 25,000 ft.

North Atlantic crossing
North Atlantic crossing

His big break on television came in 2006 when he started filming Man vs. Wild, his show in which his survival skills were tested as he was dropped in to some of the world’s most inhospitable places.

The show ran for seven series and during this time he was appointed the youngest chief scout, at the age of 35, a post he still holds.

He followed up Man vs. Wild with Bear’s Wild Weekends, in which he took stars such as Stephen Fry and Miranda Hart on survival adventures, Escape From Hell, in which he relived the experiences of people who defied the odds to survive in unlikely scenarios, and Running Wild, in which he took celebrities on two-day adventures in the wilderness.

In 2015 he ventured into the Alaskan wilderness with then US president Barack Obama to look at the effects of global warming and climate change, and a year later launched his first series for children, the CITV project Bear Grylls: Survival School.

Bear Grylls with Barack Obama
Bear Grylls with Barack Obama

Grylls’ most recent television projects include Bear’s Mission With… for ITV and the interactive series You vs. Wild, for Netflix.