Knighthood for Ben Ainslie and MBE for Dani King

Olympic heroes honoured

Olympic heroes honoured

First published in News

THEY are Hampshire’s very own Golden Wonders – and now their achievements have been rewarded in the New Year’s Honours list.

Britain’s most successful ever sailing Olympian, Ben Ainslie has been given a Knighthood.

Cyclist Dani King has been rewarded with an MBE after she won gold in the team pursuit at the Olympic velodrome, setting a world record.

Also receiving an MBE is Southampton’s Helena Lucas, who won Britain’s first ever Paralympic sailing gold.

Last night it was revealed that 35-year-old Ben is also set to be awarded the freedom of his home town.

Lymington mayor, Councillor Jacqui England, said: “I’m absolutely delighted – it couldn’t have gone to a better recipient. The whole town will be waiting to congratulate him yet again.”

Ben had been tipped to receive a knighthood ever since he won his fourth gold medal at the London Olympics in August.

His hard-fought victory in the Finn class at Weymouth followed similar successes at the 2000 Games in Sydney, the 2004 Olympics in Athens and the 2008 contest in Bejing.

These and a silver he won in Atlanta in 1996, make him the most decorated sailor in Olympic history.

In November Ben was named Sailor of the Year by the International Sailing Federation for the fourth time.

Just days later he retired from Olympic sailing to focus on his campaign to win the America’s Cup.

Meanwhile his coach, David “Sid” Howlett, of Titchfield, becomes an MBE for services to sailing and the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

David took part in the 1976 Olympics in Montreal and turned to coaching after failing to be selected for the Los Angeles Games in 1984.

Former Hamble Community Sports College pupil, Dani, 22, also becomes an MBE after she, along with teammates Joanne Rowsell and Laura Trott, smashed their world-record for the sixth time to take gold in the Team Pursuit.

Dani, who, is today heading to Manchester to resume training for the World Championships in February, said: “It’s absolutely incredible.

I wasn’t expecting it at all but it has topped off what has been the most amazing year.

“It is not just mine, this is also for the huge amount of people who have helped and supported me to get me to where I am today.”

Dani’s teammates Trott and Rowsell have also been honoured along with Bradley Wiggins who has been knighted after winning Olympic gold and the Tour de France.

Dani added: “I think he deserves it. He has had an amazing year and I know how hard he has worked to get where he is today. He is an inspiration to me.”

Being made an MBE has topped off an “amazing year”

for Helena Lucas.

Speaking from the Virgin Islands, the gold-medallist was pleased to have got the recognition for gaining Team GB’s first Paralympic sailing medal at Weymouth.

“It just makesmefeel so honoured, so proud. What a fantastic way to round off such an amazing year,” she said adding that like the gold medal, it will be with her for life.

The Southampton Solent University graduate won the single-handed small keelboat class at the regatta.

The 37-year-old, who started sailing aged eight, also told the Daily Echo she will take a year off sailing before competing in Rio 2016.

Comments (7)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

2:20pm Sat 29 Dec 12

jen1 says...

Don't call them heroes, they are not. They've done very well at their chosen sports and congratulations to them but the only lives they have made better are their own. Why nothing for Ben Parkinson? If anyone deserves a medal it's Ben, nobody has shown more courage than him, he's someone who really deserves the title of Hero.

These honours mean nothing, just meaningless trinkets handed out like raffle prizes
Don't call them heroes, they are not. They've done very well at their chosen sports and congratulations to them but the only lives they have made better are their own. Why nothing for Ben Parkinson? If anyone deserves a medal it's Ben, nobody has shown more courage than him, he's someone who really deserves the title of Hero. These honours mean nothing, just meaningless trinkets handed out like raffle prizes jen1
  • Score: 0

9:23pm Sat 29 Dec 12

derek james says...

jen1 wrote:
Don't call them heroes, they are not. They've done very well at their chosen sports and congratulations to them but the only lives they have made better are their own. Why nothing for Ben Parkinson? If anyone deserves a medal it's Ben, nobody has shown more courage than him, he's someone who really deserves the title of Hero.

These honours mean nothing, just meaningless trinkets handed out like raffle prizes
couldn't agree more he's just doing his"job" very well i may add, but i suspect he gets funded by the lottery which is a ""tax" on the poor 99.9999 per cent of whom will never win what they dream of winning , similar to mccartney who's without doubt a prolific singer/ songwriter but hero? no,
it's cameron trying to follow in blair's footsteps.
[quote][p][bold]jen1[/bold] wrote: Don't call them heroes, they are not. They've done very well at their chosen sports and congratulations to them but the only lives they have made better are their own. Why nothing for Ben Parkinson? If anyone deserves a medal it's Ben, nobody has shown more courage than him, he's someone who really deserves the title of Hero. These honours mean nothing, just meaningless trinkets handed out like raffle prizes[/p][/quote]couldn't agree more he's just doing his"job" very well i may add, but i suspect he gets funded by the lottery which is a ""tax" on the poor 99.9999 per cent of whom will never win what they dream of winning , similar to mccartney who's without doubt a prolific singer/ songwriter but hero? no, it's cameron trying to follow in blair's footsteps. derek james
  • Score: 0

9:44pm Sat 29 Dec 12

Pikey-Biker says...

Well done to Sir Bradley Wiggins you are a hero to me , I might say the same about Ben Parkinson but I dont know who he is........so he cant be a hero
Well done to Sir Bradley Wiggins you are a hero to me , I might say the same about Ben Parkinson but I dont know who he is........so he cant be a hero Pikey-Biker
  • Score: 0

8:12am Sun 30 Dec 12

jen1 says...

****-Biker wrote:
Well done to Sir Bradley Wiggins you are a hero to me , I might say the same about Ben Parkinson but I dont know who he is........so he cant be a hero
Well ****, google will provide you with an answer to who Ben is, take the time to look him up and then try telling me that he is not a hero. Try telling me that Wiggins deserves the title of hero after reading Ben's story. Your comment proves everything that is so wrong with our stupid, celebrity worshiping world
[quote][p][bold]****-Biker[/bold] wrote: Well done to Sir Bradley Wiggins you are a hero to me , I might say the same about Ben Parkinson but I dont know who he is........so he cant be a hero[/p][/quote]Well ****, google will provide you with an answer to who Ben is, take the time to look him up and then try telling me that he is not a hero. Try telling me that Wiggins deserves the title of hero after reading Ben's story. Your comment proves everything that is so wrong with our stupid, celebrity worshiping world jen1
  • Score: 0

8:26am Sun 30 Dec 12

jen1 says...

Very happy to correct myself, I've looked on a different website and Ben did win a new year's honour. He's probably the only person to actually deserve it and again the fact that he wasn't mentioned on the original website I looked at speaks volumes
Very happy to correct myself, I've looked on a different website and Ben did win a new year's honour. He's probably the only person to actually deserve it and again the fact that he wasn't mentioned on the original website I looked at speaks volumes jen1
  • Score: 0

10:41am Sun 30 Dec 12

rightway says...

I can run quite fast and I can ride a bike, so will I be getting a Knghthood ?
I can run quite fast and I can ride a bike, so will I be getting a Knghthood ? rightway
  • Score: 0

12:29am Mon 31 Dec 12

Pikey-Biker says...

jen1 wrote:
****-Biker wrote: Well done to Sir Bradley Wiggins you are a hero to me , I might say the same about Ben Parkinson but I dont know who he is........so he cant be a hero
Well ****, google will provide you with an answer to who Ben is, take the time to look him up and then try telling me that he is not a hero. Try telling me that Wiggins deserves the title of hero after reading Ben's story. Your comment proves everything that is so wrong with our stupid, celebrity worshiping world
I have looked who Ben Parkinson is and what he has achieved. I am sure there are many other people who go unnoticed as they achieve so much in their struggles in life, without looking at the honours list I am sure there are less deserving of honours than Sir Bradley Wiggins. As you are proud of Ben Parkinson and is a hero to you I am proud of what Sir Bradley Wiggins has done and is still a hero to me
[quote][p][bold]jen1[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]****-Biker[/bold] wrote: Well done to Sir Bradley Wiggins you are a hero to me , I might say the same about Ben Parkinson but I dont know who he is........so he cant be a hero[/p][/quote]Well ****, google will provide you with an answer to who Ben is, take the time to look him up and then try telling me that he is not a hero. Try telling me that Wiggins deserves the title of hero after reading Ben's story. Your comment proves everything that is so wrong with our stupid, celebrity worshiping world[/p][/quote]I have looked who Ben Parkinson is and what he has achieved. I am sure there are many other people who go unnoticed as they achieve so much in their struggles in life, without looking at the honours list I am sure there are less deserving of honours than Sir Bradley Wiggins. As you are proud of Ben Parkinson and is a hero to you I am proud of what Sir Bradley Wiggins has done and is still a hero to me Pikey-Biker
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree