The venture capitalist behind Britain’s vaccines success is to be rewarded with a damehood, The Telegraph can reveal, as Boris Johnson urges a worldwide inoculation drive to end the pandemic “for good” by next year.

Kate Bingham, 55, is to be rewarded with the honour for her unpaid work leading the UK Vaccines Taskforce and obtaining access to millions of doses of six different coronavirus jabs.

Nonsense. Should be a Countess at least.

That’s also not entirely a joke. Bingham was likely to get a DBE – services to pharma industry or such – within the decade anyway. Bringing that forward isn’t really enough.

Further, it’s about time we revived those higher peerages. Revive that difference between party hacks put in the Lords to vote the right way and those who have actually achieved something. Start issuance of those three higher grades again.

14 thoughts on “Damehood?”

  1. “. Bingham was likely to get a DBE – services to pharma industry or such – within the decade anyway. ”

    Which is the problem. She was going to get it for doing her well paid job. As will a sizeable majority of the other recipients of awards. The rest getting them irrespective of whether they’ve done anything of value or not. The entire honours system has been devalued to the point it’s no longer honourable. Leaving nothing to recognise outstanding contributions. Abolish it. Retrospectively.

  2. “ those three higher grades”

    Four, surely? Viscount, Earl, Marquess, Duke. Or only two if you agree with the idea that Viscount and Marquess are a bit too foreign.

    Has there yet been a Marchioness in her own right? Probably too high though; wasn’t that what they used to get for governing India?

  3. Careful. If this comes in, a certain accountant will get ideas about becoming Marquess of Ely.

  4. Yes, four, silly me.

    Just been reading a bio of Wellington. His older brother was most, most, pissed off to end up with Marquess only in the peerage of Ireland too…..

  5. Wot BiS said. If you’re going to give gongs to pro EU, pro mass migration civil servants, traitors in other words, the honours system is meaningless.

  6. Bloke in North Dorset

    “ Has there yet been a Marchioness in her own right?”

    As they were meant to be governing border areas and defending the kingdom/empire probably not. Although nowadays it won’t be long before whatever rule governs these things is changed, if it hasn’t been already.

  7. She must be thrilled to be elevated to a position where she is equal to people like Emma Thompson.

  8. RichardT

    There have been three marchionesses in their own right.

    Ann Boleyn was created Marquess of Pembroke by Henry VIII before their marriage and George I’s mistress Melusine von der Schulenburg was Marchioness of Dungannon (as well as Duchess of Kendall).

    Jemima Yorke inherited the Marquessate of Grey from her grandfather.

  9. On another blog two of us discussed whether she should be made a Duchess in her own right (with transmission down the female line) or given the OM. No reason why she shouldn’t get both, of course, unless you think that really would be over-egging the pudding. But Baroness seems pretty lame given that it’s the sort of stuff rubbishy civil servants get for a routine career of not getting caught.

  10. Isn’t Dame a bit rarer than Baroness these days? And less used as a reward for political hacks?
    So it does actually do the job of being an honour for her good work, albeit the whole honours system is a bit devalued

  11. “is to be rewarded with the honour for her unpaid work leading the UK Vaccines Taskforce ” why on earth wasn’t she paid?

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