OBE, CBE, now Sir
Receiving a knighthood is a privilege not many people get to experience, but Donald Insall insists he would not have been able to do it without the help of his colleagues.
The humble 84-year-old, of Kew Green, is to be knighted for services to conservation architecture in recognition of lifelong work, which has seen him help his preserve buildings such as Kew Palace and Windsor Castle.
Mr Insall, who already has an OBE and CBE for work, said: “It was a surprise as you can imagine – all of it has come as a surprise.We’re delighted the work of our team of architects have been recognised in this way.”
The father-of-three, whose architecture practice Donald Insall Associates celebrates its golden anniversary this year, added: “My work has been a lifelong interest and passion for me – it can be very challenging but hugely satisfying as it feels positive.
“I hope this appointment and increasing public interest in building conservation may help to support the work of admirable and successful bodies like the environmental trust, Richmond Society, Kingston Society and the like – all of whom do so much for us and set an example.”
Rewarded for child welfare
Being made an MBE will be an amazing achievement for Amanda Read, who has worked as an inspector for the UK Border Force to safeguard children passing through Heathrow every day for the past eight years.
Mrs Read, 46, of Upper Grotto Road, Strawberry Hill, said: “We’re all thrilled – really thrilled and very surprised.
“My dad is 85 and absolutely over the moon and wants to buy every bit of memorabilia going.”
Mrs Read, who was rewarded in recognition of her work in child welfare, paid tribute to the efforts of her team.
Picturing me with an OBE
A fashion photographer is to be made an OBE. Nick Knight, from Richmond, who has worked with leading designers including Christian Dior, John Galliano and Alexander McQueen, was recognised for services to the arts.
He said: “I am thrilled to have received it. I didn’t expect it. It’s very nice to have my work recognised.”
After a career spanning more than 25 years, Mr Knight sees fashion as an insight into who people are.
He added: “Fashion is a basic form of communication in society. It is used to display power and is the first, crucial sign we see in each other.
“I was always interested in fashion because it plays an important part of how we behave as people.”
Services to the homeless
Helping the homeless has led to an OBE for Leslie Morphy.
The charity worker, of West Park Road, Kew, has been chief executive of Crisis, a charity for single homeless people, for three-and-a-half years.
The mother-of-two, who previously worked for the Prince’s Trust and other not-for-profit organisations, said: “I’m extremely delighted for the organisation.
“This award is for everyone who works for Crisis, it’s an award for the organisation and the work done by the charity.”
She explained the charity offers education, employment, housing and wellbeing services to help people to transform their lives.
She added: “Our purpose is to end homelessness.”
Kenneth Olisa, 58, of Glamorgan Road, Hampton Wick, was also given an OBE for services to the homeless in recognition of his role as chairman of charity organisation Thames Reach for the past 10 years.
He said: “Being given this honour feels wonderful. For our work to be recognised in this way is just brilliant for all 400 members of our staff.”