Page last updated at 00:51 GMT, Thursday, 31 December 2009

River Cafe founders become MBEs

Rose Gray and Lady Ruth Rogers (right)
River Cafe earned a Michelin star in 1998

The founders of the River Cafe restaurant in west London have been appointed MBEs in the New Year Honours.

Chefs Rose Gray and Ruth Rogers opened the Hammersmith restaurant in 1987, earning a Michelin star in 1998.

Star Trek actor Patrick Stewart, who lives in south-east London, and Erich Reich, who raised millions for charity after fleeing the Nazis, are knighted.

Beefeater Richard Sands, who received the Royal Victorian Medal, said: "I'm incredibly proud, it's a real honour."

Italian food restaurant River Cafe is situated on the north bank of the Thames.

Mrs Gray and Lady Rogers followed its success with cookery books and a spin-off Channel 4 TV series The Italian Kitchen. They were honoured for services to the hospitality industry.

'Very proud'

Other London businesswomen to be honoured included Catherine Kidston, from Chiswick, west London, who sells homeware and clothing with a trademark floral design at her Cath Kidston stores. She becomes an MBE.

Patrick Stewart, who has starred in TV series Star Trek: The Next Generation and the X-Men films said he was "very proud" to be knighted for services to drama after a 50-year career in movies, TV and theatre.

Born in Mirfield, Yorkshire, he returned from Los Angeles in 2003 to live in Rotherhithe, south-east London, and resume his theatrical career.

Richard Sands
New Year's Eve is also my daughter's birthday so there will be a double celebration
Richard Sands

Erich Reich, 74, who lives in Highgate, north London, said he was "overawed" to receive a knighthood as chair of the Kindertransport Group of the Association of Jewish Refugees.

One of 10,000 "Kindertransport" children sent from Nazi-occupied Europe to safety in the UK before World War II, he subsequently helped raise around £60m for charity.

National Theatre director Nicholas Hytner and Victoria and Albert Museum director Mark Jones also received knighthoods.

Painter and sculptor Maggi Hambling, from Chelsea, south-west London, theatre director Phyllida Lloyd, from Islington, north London, and Forsyte Saga actress Margaret Tyzack, from Blackheath, south-east London, were among those to become a CBE.

Milliner Stephen Jones, from Covent Garden, and Pineapple Dance Studio founder Debbie Moore, from Pimlico, central London, were appointed OBEs.

Trombone player

Health campaigner Dr Miriam Stoppard, from Mayfair, central London, and fashion designer Amanda Wakeley, from Chelsea, south-west London, also became OBEs.

Beefeater Richard Sands, 60, received the Royal Victorian Medal after working at the Tower of London for 20 years.

Elizabeth Atere-Roberts
It is wonderful to be acknowledged in this way
Elizabeth Atere-Roberts

He became a yeoman warder after 22 years of military service, including time as a royal trombone player and a bandmaster of the 14th/20th King's Hussars.

He said: "New Year's Eve is also my daughter's birthday so there will be a double celebration."

Elizabeth Atere-Roberts, 60, from Lewisham, south London, was "delighted" to be appointed an OBE for services to healthcare.

She recently retired as a specialist nurse for Lambeth, Southwark and Lewisham primary care trusts, where she ensured older people received the care and support they needed from the private sector and NHS.

Mrs Atere-Roberts said: "Having worked so hard for 40 years in healthcare, it is wonderful to be acknowledged in this way.

"I really am one of the lucky ones as I have loved working with older people and thoroughly enjoyed everything I have done."

Other Londoners honoured included Wandsworth Council Deputy Leader Maurice Heaster, now an OBE; Clapham Youth Centre Vice Chairwoman Ilene Ming-Deans, who becomes an MBE; and Jane Johnson, head of St Stephen's Primary School in Newham, east London, who has been appointed an OBE.



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