THE principal of an Isle of Wight college will be honoured by the Pope.

Pat Goodhead from Christ the King College in Newport will be made a Dame of the Papal Equestrian Order of Saint Gregory the Great in recognition of service to the Catholic church.

The award, which was granted to her on the personal authority of Pope Francis will be presented to her by the Bishop of Portsmouth, Philip Egan, later this year. The Pope has also agreed to a request to pray for the college.

Mrs Goodhead said: “It is a great privilege to be the recipient of such a prestigious award. The news came as a complete surprise, rendering me unusually speechless but deeply grateful to those who deem me worthy of this honour.”