Page last updated at 00:41 GMT, Thursday, 31 December 2009

Patrick Stewart leads Oxfordshire honours list

Patrick Stewart
Stewart received an OBE in 2001 for services to drama

The actor Patrick Stewart who lives in Oxfordshire has received a knighthood in the New Year Honours List.

The classically-trained actor, best known for his roles in Star Trek and in the X-Men, was made an OBE in 2001.

Formula One team boss Ross Brawn, who lives in Henley-on-Thames, becomes an OBE after Brawn GP won the Constructors' Championship this year.

Professor Valerie Beral has been made a Dame for her work at the Cancer Epidemiology Unit in Oxford.

Her team is looking at how a woman's lifestyle, including her reproductive and family history, can influence her health and whether she is likely to develop breast cancer.

'Green gyms'

Other people in Oxfordshire to be recognised in the honours list include Adrian Shooter, the chairman of Chiltern Railway Company, who becomes a CBE.

Professor Marcus du Sautoy, Professor of Mathematics at the University of Oxford, is made an OBE for services to science.

Marcus du Sautoy
Marcus du Sautoy is one of the UK's leading scientists.

He is a recipient of the London Mathematical Society's prestigious Berwick Prize and in 2004 was chosen by Esquire Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people under 40 in Britain.

Dr William Bird, a GP and Strategic Health Adviser to Natural England, was the man behind "green gyms" which provide environmental activities to help people get active outside.

Dr Bird has been made a MBE for services to Healthcare and Physical Activity.

Jean Heath, a teaching assistant for more than 40 years, has been has been made a MBE for her services to Chadlington Primary School.

Mrs Heath, 72, said: "When I first got it I thought it was a wind-up because my brother's a great one for winding people up."

All four of her sons attended Chadlington Primary School and Mrs Heath still volunteers in the classroom with reading and craft work.

"I just love going down there, I love being with the children, the atmosphere at the school is fantastic, " she added.

"I get a lot of satisfaction, I've always enjoyed doing things with children, I don't think I ever grew up really - I'm one of them".

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