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Vicky McClure MBE describes feeling of being awarded an honour

Nottingham actor Vicky McClure has described the ‘surreal’ feeling of being awarded an MBE as part of the King’s Birthday Honours.

The honours list, published on June 16, announced Vicky had been awarded the accolade for services to drama and music.

The Line of Duty and This is England star is also a supporter of the Alzheimer’s Society, of which she is an ambassador, and has raised awareness of the disease by setting up Our Dementia Choir, which has appeared in a BBC TV series and performed at Splendour 2022.

The honours mark the achievements and service of ‘extraordinary people’ across the United Kingdom.

Vicky says that she wants to use the honour to further help the charities she works with, Our Dementia Choir, the Teenage Cancer Trust and Nottingham-based Switch Up.

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The Bafta-winner, 40, said: “It feels genuinely surreal.

“For the charities I work with, I really hope that it will help in terms of their future. I see a lot of good that I can do with it.

“I was filming Trigger Point at the time when I got the letter so I wasn’t at home and my sister was opening my post.

“She sent me a message telling me to check my WhatsApp – but I wasn’t expecting anything like this.

“I’ve got a brilliant career that I’m really proud to have, but I know that the platform allows me to do things that make a change to people’s lives.

“I can’t quite put it into words. I grew up in Wollaton, I’m very proud of where I’m from. I didn’t gain loads of GCSEs, it isn’t like I was destined for this kind of accolades.”

Vicky, who also holds honorary doctorates from both the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University, admitted it was hard to keep the news a secret, saying she had to “literally just put it out of my mind”.

She added: “It’s been really overwhelming, I’ve had lots of kind messages from people on social media.

“It’s nice when people appreciate what you’ve done but I don’t do it for the applause or anything like that.

“I hope that it raises everybody’s awareness as dementia can be the forgotten disease.

“My nanas both had dementia and I have lots of friends that live with dementia within the choir.

“I hear day-to-day the struggles they go through and we really have to change things now. There are nearly one million people living with dementia in this country and the support is lacking.”

She also spoke about the Nottingham attacks, which led to the deaths of University of Nottingham students Barnaby Webber and Grace O’Malley-Kumar, both aged 19, and Ian Coates, 65.

Vicky attended the vigil for the victims on June 15 in Old Market Square in Nottingham.

She said: “It is your worst nightmare.

“It’s hard to put it into words but I feel heartbroken for those parents and families.

“It was an incredibly moving day at the vigil having the community together. The faith leaders spoke beautifully.

“I’m very proud of how Nottingham has come together to support them and we will continue to do that.

“It’s hard for the city because it’s not something you expect to happen.

“I know that Nottingham is full of love and hope and we are all about looking after each other.

“We will never forget them, that’s never going to happen.”

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