EDINBURGH (Reuters) - Police officer Keith Palmer, who died protecting members of the public and parliament during an attack at Westminster, was given a posthumous award for bravery in Queen Elizabeth’s annual birthday honours on Friday, Britain’s Cabinet Office said.
The honours pay tribute to those who have contributed to British life with their achievements in the arts, sciences or public service.
In the attack in March, a man drove a car into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge, killing four people, and then stabbed Palmer to death in the grounds of parliament. The attacker was shot dead at the scene.
As well as Palmer’s George Medal, others honoured included Sandra Major, a constituency worker of the late British lawmaker Jo Cox, who was with Cox when she was killed a year ago. She received an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire).
On the celebrity front, Scottish comedian Billy Connolly won a knighthood for his entertainment and charity work. Actress Julie Walters, who starred in “Billy Elliot” and in several of the “Harry Potter” films, was made a dame.
Olivia de Havilland, who was in “Gone With the Wind” and is now aged 100, was also given a damehood. Singer Ed Sheeran was recognised for his music and charity work with an MBE.
Awards for a major contribution to the arts, science, medicine, or government were also given to a group including “Harry Potter” author JK Rowling, former Beatle Paul McCartney and designer Terence Conran.
Amongst those rewarded in the world of sport were tennis coach Judy Murray, mother of world number one Andy Murray. She was awarded an OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) for her work in inspiring young people to play.
There was also an OBE for rugby player Rory Best and an MBE for Steven Davis, captain of the Northern Ireland football team.
Author and illustrator Raymond Briggs, best known for “The Snowman”, also received an accolade along with musician Emile Sande and 1960s singer Sandy Shaw.
Reporting by Elisabeth O'Leary; Editing by Alison Williams