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09th January 2017

Sir Roger Bannister made Companion of Honour

Sir Roger Bannister (1946, Physiological Sciences) has been made a Companion of Honour in the New Year's honours list.

Sir Roger was famously the first man to run a mile in under four minutes and won gold at the 1954 Empire Games and the 1954 European Championships, in the mile and 1500 metres respectively, before going on to enjoy a career as an eminent neurologist. He was made a Companion of Honour for services to sport, becoming one of just 54 living people to hold the title.

Sir Roger, who is also a CBE, said he was thrilled.

“I have always been astonishingly lucky in my career, which has encompassed both sport and neurology. I never anticipated or predicted or wished particularly for a further honour but I am delighted to receive this.”

Sir Roger Bannister

As well as inspiring people on the running track, Sir Roger was the first chairman of the Sports Council – now called Sport England.

Sir Roger reflected that his most recent honour was particularly fitting following a successful year for British sport in 2016.

He said: “My chairmanship of the Sports Council came to fruition and was reflected in the very successful Olympics in London and in Rio. I do take an interest in what I would call the healthy side of sport.”

Sir Roger’s wife Lady Moyra Bannister said: “I am very proud. He has been doing good one way or another for a long time.

“We get the most amazing letters from people even now, it is unbelievable, people who have read his books and then joined a sports club and transformed their lives. I am thrilled for him.”

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