01 February 2022

Line Of Duty creator Jed Mercurio and Jo Cox’s sister to receive royal honours

01 February 2022

Line Of Duty creator Jed Mercurio and politician Kim Leadbeater, the sister of murdered MP Jo Cox, will be among a host of high-achievers to be recognised with royal honours on Tuesday.

The Prince of Wales and the Princess Royal are to hand out medals at two investiture ceremonies at Windsor Castle.

Mercurio, whose hit shows also include the political thriller Bodyguard and medical drama Bodies, is being honoured for services to TV drama.

Adrian Dunbar and Vicky McClure on the set of the sixth series of Mercurio’s hit show Line of Duty (Liam McBurney/PA Archive) (PA Archive)

The sixth series of Line Of Duty, his BBC drama about a police anti-corruption unit, was a ratings juggernaut last year, with 15.9 million viewers tuning in to see H finally unmasked in the season finale, making it the UK’s most-watched drama series of the 21st century so far.

His latest series Trigger Point, a six-part ITV thriller about a terrorist summer campaign, again starring Vicky McClure, recently debuted to rave reviews.

Mercurio, from Nelson in Lancashire, began his screenwriting career penning medical dramas such as Cardiac Arrest after practising as a hospital doctor for four years.

He has also taken his writing skills to another medium, authoring several books and a graphic novel called Sleeper with the writer and actor Prasanna Puwanarajah.

After being appointed an OBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours, Mercurio tweeted: “I’m honoured to received an OBE, and humbled to have been included in the New Year’s Honours List alongside recipients who’ve achieved so much more, in particular for their charity work and in the Covid pandemic”.

Ms Leadbeater is to pick up an MBE for her work tackling social isolation.

The Labour MP stepped up her efforts during the coronavirus pandemic as millions faced loneliness due to lockdowns.

Her sister Jo Cox was killed in 2016 when she was shot and stabbed by a neo-Nazi outside her constituency surgery a week before the EU referendum.

Ms Leadbeater has represented the same seat occupied by her sister, Batley and Spen, since winning a by-election last summer.

She has championed the issues Mrs Cox had been passionate about, including building a compassionate and cohesive community in the West Yorkshire constituency through the More In Common initiative and Jo Cox Foundation.

Kim Leadbeater, pictured after winning the Batley and Spen by-election, will pick up her MBE for services to social cohesion (Danny Lawson/PA) (PA Archive)

Oscar-winning cinematographer Sir Roger Deakins is to be knighted by Charles for services to film.

During his five-decade career, he has collaborated with renowned directors such as the Coen brothers, Sam Mendes and Denis Villeneuve on blockbusters including Sid & Nancy (1986), Fargo (1996), Blade Runner 2049 (2017) and 1917 (2019).

Others to be recognised at Tuesday’s investitures include Wendy Williams, a solicitor who conducted the 2018 review into the Windrush scandal; neuroscientist and laughter expert Professor Sophie Scott; Dior menswear fashion designer Kim Jones; product and furniture designer Jasper Morrison; and Peter Martin, a telecoms engineer who worked through the night to restore a phone line at the Sandringham Estate before Christmas 2020.

Mike Hind, a personal trainer who provided care packages to families across Teesside during lockdowns, has walked 250 miles from Yorkshire to Windsor to collect his MBE with the aim of raising £25,000 for charity.

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