Honorary fellowships were conferred on the following people in the November graduation ceremonies of 2011.

Harry King

In recognition of his outstanding contribution to broadcasting, the arts and the Cumbrian community

Harry King is a proud Cumbrian. Born in Whitehaven, when Border Television opened its doors in 1961, Harry was taken on as a mail-room assistant. During his time with Border he progressed through the ranks from Assistant Floor Manager to spending over 25 years as one of the station’s main Network Producer and Programme Directors. Retiring from Border Television in 1999 he started work at BBC Radio Cumbria eventually producing and presenting his own weekly programme of memories from the golden era of entertainment. Beyond broadcasting he has been involved for nearly 50 years with the Carlisle Musical Society, as stage director and production manager, he has reluctantly taken a back seat with the producing side of productions, but is still frequently called upon to advise “the younger members of the society.” Harry is often asked to host charity nights and to suggest ways of money raising, he himself has helped raise funds for many local charities. His many friends in the world of entertainment still give Harry much pleasure in allowing him to continue wandering along memory lane.

Helen Skelton

In recognition of her outstanding contribution to broadcasting, the Cumbrian community and her charitable work

Helen Skelton was Kirkby Thore near Penrith, Cumbria and graduated from Cumbria College of Art & Design in 2004 with a first class honours degree in Journalism. She began her career in broadcasting, working at ITV Border, CFM commercial radio and BBC Radio Cumbria.

In 2008, Helen joined the ‘Blue Peter’ team as the 33rd presenter of the long running show. She has achieved many feats of endurance to raise funds for charity including the Namibia Ultra Marathon, the London Marathon, kayaking down the Amazon, and high-wire walking between the towers of Battersea Power Station. She regularly reports on major sporting events as part of the BBC ‘5 Live’ team and for ‘Countryfile’.

Sir James Anthony Cropper, KCVO

In recognition of his definitive contribution to Cumbria, the local economy and its charitable causes

Sir James Anthony Cropper was born in Kendal, Cumbria. He trained as a Chartered Accountant before joining the family paper-manufacturing company, James Cropper plc, Kendal in 1966. He retired as Chief Executive in December 2000 and as Chairman in July 2006 and the Board in July 2013, at which date he took up the title of Honorary President. Sir James has held a number of public service roles within the region throughout his career and is very supportive of organisations and charities in Cumbria. Most notably he was involved in the formation of the Cumbria Community Foundation in 1999 and remains a Patron today. Sir James is also President of Sight Advice South Lakes.  Sir James served the county of Cumbria as Lord-Lieutenant from 1994 to 2012. 

The late Jeffrey Fardon

(05 February 1937 – 05 July 2011) (Posthumous Award)

In recognition of his outstanding contribution to the academic development of the understanding of the social history of learning disability

Jill Ward

In recognition of her outstanding contribution to the academic development of the understanding of the social history of learning disability

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