Business leaders from across the North West have been recognized in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honors List ahead of the Platinum Jubilee weekend.
Among those honored this year are Fragrance Shop CEO Sanjay Vadera, Iceland boss Richard Walker and East Lancashire Chamber leader Miranda Barker, as well as Claire McColgan, who helped contributing hundreds of millions of pounds to Liverpool’s economy over years of high-profile events. .
Sanjay Vadera managing director of The Fragrance Shop and Per-Scent in Trafford Park, is appointed MBE for services to international trade.
Mr. Vadera established Per-Scent in 1990 and in 2006 purchased The Fragrance Shop. Per-Scent Ltd employs 90 people, increasing to 140 during peak season, serving retailers, distributors and wholesalers worldwide. Exports currently stand at around £25m and the company expects them to increase by a further 25% this year.
Today, the Fragrance Shop now has 200 stores and an online shopping channel, and employs 1,400 people. The company has also raised over £1.6million for children’s charities through its Spray a Little Happiness foundation.
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Sanjay Vadera said: “I am very proud to have received this honour, especially in the year of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. It’s a reflection of all the hard work my family and all the colleagues we work with have put into the business over the years.
“It is very satisfying to know that we have made a valuable contribution to the economy and I am also very proud that we have been able to share this success and support wonderful children’s charities such as Rays of Sunshine through our Spray a Little Happiness Foundation.”
Richard Walker managing director of Icelandic company Deeside, based in Cheshire, is appointed OBE for business and environmental services.
He took over the reins of the group in August 2018 and has directed its efforts towards sustainability and reduced use of plastic.
Claire McColgan , director of Culture Liverpool, has been appointed CBE for services to arts and culture. Ms McColgan has led events that have drawn millions of visitors to Liverpool, including the Royal de Luxe Giant Spectaculars. She also organized this year’s Good Business Festival in Liverpool.
She said: “I am truly prepared to receive the CBE in Queen’s Birthday honors and am honored to have been recognized nationally for the work I deliver, which has its roots in this city that I love.
“There are always a lot of people behind these awards – they are never about the individual, and I would like to thank the Culture Liverpool team, who I really love. I would also like to thank Liverpool City Council, because at the over the past 20 years, it has given me and the creative brilliants of this city and beyond the chance to prove that with a long-term view, legacy is not just a joy to having it can transform the economic prosperity of a place.”
Sir Phil Redmond CBE said: “This is a very well deserved award for someone who has continually put the ingredients into the rocket fuel that has driven Liverpool since 2008.”
Miranda Barker, Chief Executive of the East Lancashire Chamber of Commerce, was appointed OBE for Lancashire Business and Community Services.
Nigel Wilkinson Managing Director of Windermere Lake Cruises, is appointed MBE for Services to Tourism and the Cumbria Economy.
His business is one of the country’s top tourist attractions, with over 1.6 million passenger trips a year – while he also chairs the Cumbria LEP Visitor Economy Sector Panel.
Lord Inglewood, Chairman of Cumbria LEP, said: “This award is very well deserved and recognizes the commitment Nigel has made to Cumbria. Not only has he led the growth of Windermere Lake Cruises, making it one of the highest paying attractions in the country, but he has also shown an unwavering dedication to Cumbria’s wider tourist economy.
“In his role on the LEP Board and other organisations, he has dedicated his time, expertise and knowledge to enhancing the reputation of the Lake District as an international tourist destination. He did so with real commitment, always seeking to support companies in his sector.
“The past few years have been difficult and uncertain for the visitor economy and throughout this time Nigel has absolutely championed the sector ensuring its needs, challenges and opportunities are communicated and understood at a national level. A timely and well-deserved honour.
Lady Susan Ion , of Preston, was made a Dame Grand Cross of the Order of the British Empire (GBE) for services to engineering. She is Chair of the Nuclear Innovation Research Advisory Board and Honorary Chair of the National Skills Academy for Nuclear.
Humera Haqqani managing director of Let’s Talk, is appointed MBE for Rochdale Business and Community Services.
Captain Michael Morris president of the United Kingdom Maritime Pilots Association, based in Southport, is appointed MBE for services to the maritime industry.
Claire Bernadette Roberts CEO of Kids Planet Day Nurseries in Manchester, was appointed OBE for services to education.
Dave Moutrey, director and general manager of arts venue HOME Manchester, has been appointed OBE for services to the arts, in particular during Covid-19.
Professor Samia Nefti-Meziani, Professor of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, and Director of the Center for Autonomous Systems and Advanced Robotics at the University of Salford, has been appointed OBE for Services to Robotics.
Mr Pascal Soriot CEO of AstraZeneca, was knighted for his services to UK life sciences and the response to Covid-19.
The Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine was approved in December 2020, and the shots were initially rolled out among the elderly and most vulnerable in society.
AstraZeneca employs thousands of people in the North West at sites in Alderley Park, Speke and Macclesfield.
Sir Pascal said: “I am truly touched by this recognition. Growing up in France, I had many dreams and hopes for the future, but I never thought I would receive a knighthood from Her Majesty The Queen.
“As an Australian citizen, it is a great privilege to receive this award and an honor to work with so many exceptional people around the world who are dedicated to following science in order to bring medicines to patients.
“This recognition is also theirs and I would like to thank each of them for their commitment to our mission.
“I am also grateful to my family for their support which has allowed me to pursue a career doing what I love.”