CBEs for Victor and Sieghart

CBEs for Victor and Sieghart

Literary agent Ed Victor, philanthropist William Sieghart and authors Simon Brett and Vivian French all feature on this year's New Year's Honours.

Victor (pictured) becomes a Commander of the British Empire (CBE) for services to literature; Sieghart receives the same honour for services to public libraries, following his chairing of two recent library reviews.

Saying he was "thrilled beyond words" by the honour, Victor commented: "When I first became an agent in 1974, literary agents were regarded by publishers as being 'below the salt'.  I vowed to change that, and put literary agency into the key position it now occupies in the chain of progress towards publication from author to reader.  I hope I -- and the other agents who crossed the then impermeable border between publishing and agenting (such as my own agent Jonathan Lloyd) -- have helped accomplish that."

Crime writer Brett has been awarded an OBE (Officer of the British Empire) while Vivian French, author of the Tales from the Five Kingdoms series (Walker Books), receives an MBE (Member of the British Empire) "for services to literature, literacy, illustration and the arts".

Playwright and screenwriter Peter Morgan, whose book The Audience is published by Faber, receives a CBE.

Meanwhile art historian Sir Roy Strong, author of many volumes, including Visions of England (Vintage), has received a Companion of Honour for services to culture.

Professor Paul Curran, vice chancellor of City University, is made a knight for services to higher education.

The book trade is relatively lightly represented in this year's honours list, which also includes a knighthood for  choreographer Matthew Bourne, damehoods for Net-a-Porter founder Natalie Massenet, and actresses Sian Philips and Barbara Windsor, CBEs for actress Imelda Staunton and Ann Summers c.e.o. Jacqueline Gold, and an OBE for actor Idris Elba.