Honours system must acknowledge community champions, says May


Britain's honours system must ensure people who are "really contributing" to society and their communities are recognised, according to Theresa May.

The Prime Minister signalled she is seeking a different approach to her predecessor David Cameron, who was accused of cronyism after he dished out gongs to a string of political allies, Tory donors and Downing Street staff in his resignation honours. 

Mrs May told The Andrew Marr Show on BBC One: "If you look at any of the honours when they're announced, the vast majority of people are people who have given something - perhaps to their local community, who have been involved in charities, who've been working in a particular area and contributed a lot over the years.

"Of course, the focus is always on the big names and the headlines in that sense.

"But I agree that we want an honours system that actually ensures we can recognise when people out there are really contributing to our society and to their communities."

Mr Cameron created 13 Tory life peers in his resignation honours, including Number 10 political aides Gabrielle Bertin and Camilla Cavendish.

Knighthoods were given to Cabinet ministers Michael Fallon and Patrick McLoughlin plus former ministers Oliver Letwin and Hugo Swire, while former chancellor George Osborne became a Companion of Honour.

Samantha Cameron's stylist Isabel Spearman received an OBE for political and public service.

Key Remain campaigners from the EU referendum were also rewarded, including a CBE for Stronger In campaign director Will Straw.