[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Tuesday, 4 July 2006, 16:03 GMT 17:03 UK
Honorary degree for media stars
Neil Morrissey at Staffordshire University
Morrissey first thought of acting while in a Stafford children's home
Comedy actor Neil Morrissey has been granted an honorary degree from Staffordshire University.

He is among several famous names with links to the county being honoured at a series of ceremonies this week.

The Men Behaving Badly star and voice of Bob The Builder recalled his school report saying: "Neil likes to take the easy way out".

The ex-Staffordshire schoolboy added: "It could not get any easier than being given a doctorate, could it?"

Irene Zubaida Khan, secretary general of Amnesty International
Gloria Mills CBE, a union campaigner for equal pay, childcare, women, employment, race and human rights issues
Lord Karan Bilimoria CBE, who developed Cobra Beer
Juliette Ferrington, BBC Radio Five Live's north of England football reporter
Professor Stephen Field, Regional Postgraduate Dean for the West Midlands Deanery
Councillor David Smith, chairman of the West Midlands Local Government Association and West Midlands Regional Assembly
Professor Tom Ruxton, Staffordshire University's Dean of the School of Engineering
Lord Stafford whose awards encourage relationships between West Midlands businesses and universities
Theatre and opera designer Alison Chitty
Robin Levien RDI, product designer specialising in ceramics

Also receiving the university's top honour this week is BBC Security Correspondent Frank Gardner, shot six times at close range in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in 2004.

Other TV faces getting the honour include comic documentary maker Dave Gorman who grew up in Walton-on-the-Hill, Stafford, and Philippa Forrester who presented the BBC's Tomorrow's World and Robot Wars

And there is also recognition for the mother of Staffordshire music star Robbie Williams.

Jan Williams is a counsellor dealing with the affects of alcohol abuse on families and her work inspired Robbie to found the charity Give it Sum fund which helps projects, community groups and voluntary organisations based in north Staffordshire.

Trevor Phillips, broadcaster and chair of the Commission for Racial Equality is another famous face to receive the honour.

Staffordshire University vice-chancellor Professor Christine King said: "Each year we invite a number of people to join the University community as honorary graduates.

"These are people we are proud to be associated with, who are inspirational in their own right and who have made a real difference in their respective areas."

Ceremonies are running all week for 3,000 graduates to collect their final year awards.

Watch an interview with Neil Morrissey

Morrissey in mobile comedy show
03 Apr 06 |  Entertainment
Actor a tourist draw in new home
20 Apr 05 |  South West Wales

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific