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Newcastle University honours Bryan Ferry CBE


Legendary musician Bryan Ferry returned to the North East today to receive an honorary degree from Newcastle University.

The chief songwriter and lead vocalist with the critically acclaimed band Roxy Music was be made honorary Doctor of Music degree at a ceremony in the University’s King’s Hall.

It will be the second time he has graduated from the University. Mr Ferry studied Fine Art at Newcastle and completed his studies in 1968. Four years after he left, Roxy Music emerged. They went on to become one of the most influential bands of the 1970s and 1980s, enjoying critical and commercial success and producing eight classic albums including For Your Pleasure and Avalon.

Mr Ferry said: "I feel honoured to have been awarded this Doctorate from my former University. I enjoyed my time at Newcastle, and was fortunate to study with some great teachers and fellow students. It was an inspiring time to be an art student in Newcastle, and the city also had an exciting music scene. Music and art have guided my life, and it all started at Newcastle University."

As a solo artist, he has released a number of critically-acclaimed albums, from These Foolish Things in 1973 to The Jazz Age in 2012. He has also conceived and directed some of the most original, controversial and critically applauded album artwork of the last four decades.

In 2012 Ferry was awarded the CBE for his services to music, and in the same year the French made him an Officier des Arts et des Lettres.

Recently, he agreed to be Patron of a £3.5 million fundraising campaign to redevelop the University’s Hatton art gallery.

Newcastle University’s Registrar, Dr John Hogan, said: “We are delighted to welcome back and honour one of our graduates who has achieved so much in his field. Newcastle University has an excellent reputation for education in art and music and Mr Ferry is a great example and inspiration to our students graduating in those disciplines this summer.”

Also receiving honorary degrees in July:

Renowned bioscientist, Sir Paul Nurse, Director General of the new Crick Institute and President of the Royal Society, winner of the 2001 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, who will receive an honorary Doctor of Science degree for his contribution to advances in cancer research and cell biology.

Professor Elizabeth Molyneux OBE, a paediatric oncologist who has dedicated her life to helping children in sub-Saharan Africa (Honorary Doctor of Science).
Lord Stewart Sutherland, one of the country’s leading academics in the field of ageing (Honorary Doctor of Civil Law).

Warren East CBE, former Chief Executive Officer of ARM Holdings plc, one of the world’s leading designers of processor technology for mobile phones and many of consumer and industrial electronic devices (Honorary Doctor of Civil Law).

Dr Hogan said: “These honorands have excelled in the fields of medicine, science and technology and I am delighted they have agreed to receive an honorary degree from Newcastle University.”

All images of Bryan Ferry courtesy of Owen Humphreys/Press Association

published on: 11 July 2014