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Friday, 24 November, 2000, 15:01 GMT
Parky picks up CBE
Michael Parkinson CBE
The interviewer was humble after receiving his CBE
BBC television stalwart Michael Parkinson collected his CBE from Prince Charles on Friday and then promptly left it behind at Buckingham Palace.

The popular TV interviewer left his medal on a bench after the investiture - but it was quickly returned to him.

The modest star said he had received the honour for "nothing more than walking down the stairs and talking to people".

Michael Parkinson CBE and Lulu OBE
Michael Parkinson CBE and Lulu OBE pose for photographers
Parkinson has interviewed the world's top stars over the last 30 years. The CBE is an official recognition of his "services to broadcasting".

"There are people receiving their honours here today who have saved lives or taught somebody," he said.

"Their achievements are fantastic," he added.

Also honoured in the palace ceremony were singer Lulu, who received an OBE, designer Sir Paul Smith, and former Liberal Democrat leader Sir Paddy Ashdown.

'Eternal youth'

Lulu, whose career goes back 36 years, said her medal was "a great honour and was a real surprise".

"He [Prince Charles] told me I had found the secret of eternal youth," she said.

Sir Paul is only the second person from the fashion industry to receive a knighthood, after Sir Hardy Amies in 1977.

Sir Paul opened his first outlet in Nottingham with 600 in 1970.

He had to ask a friend to tailor a morning suit for him because his own label does not make them.

"I was going to wear a Paul Smith lounge suit but was advised by the Palace to put on a morning suit," said Sir Paul.

Sir Paddy Ashdown was knighted under his real name of Jeremy Ashdown.

The MP stood down as Lib Dem leader in August 1999.

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See also:

15 Sep 00 | Entertainment
Stars at the centre of the BBC
06 Oct 00 | Entertainment
Parkinson's Saturday comeback
03 Mar 99 | The Company File
Paul Smith says 'no' to M&S
26 Sep 98 | Entertainment
Home shopping - Paul Smith style
23 Oct 00 | UK Politics
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