Four University of Birmingham members of staff recognised in the 2015 Queen's Birthday Honours

Professor Simon Halsey, Professor and Director of Choral Activities at the University of Birmingham, has been awarded an CBE for services to music.

SimonHalsey(MatthiasHeyde)Professor Halsey has been Chorus Director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Choruses for more than 30 years and in 2012 was appointed Choral Director of the London Symphony Orchestra and London Symphony Chorus. He became the first Director of the BBC Proms Youth Choir in 2012 and has won three Grammy awards for his recordings with the Rundfunkchor Berlin. At the University of Birmingham, Professor Halsey directs a postgraduate course in Choral Conducting, in association with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Last year Professor Halsey was awarded the Queen’s Medal for Music 2014.

Professor Halsey said: "It's a delightful surprise to receive a CBE! As a conductor, I'm not much use without my singers and I'm particularly proud of the super University of Birmingham singers and young conductors who give so much to our lively campus!" 

Image credit: Matthias Heyde

Professor David Parker, Edward Cadbury Professor of Theology and Director of the Institute for the Textual Scholarship and Electronic Editing, received an OBE for services to higher education.

Professor David ParkerProfessor Parker, FBA, FSA has been a member of the University of Birmingham since 1993. Before that he taught at Queen’s College, Birmingham, and was previously in Anglican parochial ministry in London and north Oxfordshire. His research field is the textual criticism of the New Testament, and the development of digital methodologies and tools in textual scholarship. Publications include a number of websites, such as one presenting the world’s oldest Bible. The Department of Theology and Religion was ranked second in the recent REF exercise.

Professor Parker said: “It is very exciting to receive this national honour, especially since it acknowledges the significance of my discipline. In particular it recognises the importance of the opportunities the digital world affords for transforming textual scholarship and developing new interdisciplinary research.”

Dr Clare Taylor, General Practitioner and NIHR Doctoral Research Fellow, has been awarded an MBE for services to general practice.

Dr Clare TaylorDr Taylor graduated with distinction from the University of Cambridge and trained in hospital medicine gaining Membership of the Royal College of Physicians, London before undertaking further training in academic general practice and public health. She is now an academic GP at the University of Birmingham and her main research interest is cardiovascular disease. She has published papers on heart failure and atrial fibrillation and edited a textbook of Cardiovascular Disease in Primary Care. She is a module lead for the Masters in Primary Care and is a tutor and senior examiner for students at the University of Birmingham medical school. Clare is also an active member of Council at the Royal College of General Practitioners. She was Chair of their Associates in Training Committee and went on to establish and lead the RCGP First5 programme which supports new GPs through the formative years of independent practice. 

Dr Taylor said: “I feel very fortunate to have received this honour. I am passionate about the importance of GP trainees and new (First5) GPs having a voice in UK general practice and I feel this award is for everyone who has helped to make that happen. We really need to treasure and keep both our new and established GPs in the workforce, and encourage more medical students into general practice. People are - thankfully - living longer but often with multiple health conditions so the need for generalists to look after patients in a holistic way, close to their home, has never been greater. As an academic GP I also feel research in primary care is vital to support the evidence based for what we as GPs do each day.”

Carl Hingley, Senior Automotive Technician, School of Mechanical Engineering, receives the British Empire Medal for services to higher education, STEM education and the automotive industry.

Carl HingleyMr Hingley has served the University for almost four decades during which he has played a pivotal role in supporting the education - and enhancing the experience - of more than 2,500 Mechanical Engineering students, from supervising work experience and delivering engineering taster courses to sixth-formers to assisting second-year students with their group projects. He also constructs test rigs and prototypes for final-year students, trains postgraduate students in the use of specialist equipment and helps students of all stages with their Formula Student project, with which he has been associated since its inception 17 years ago.

Mr Hingley said: "It is an amazing surprise to receive this award. I think I only believed it when I saw it in print. This is my 39th year at the University and at the moment the students are building the 18th racing car in my laboratory. I always have immense pride in their achievements and in the jobs that they obtain after working with me on the Formula Student project."