Flamboyant entertainer and Fast Show star to be honoured by UEA

Julian Clary
Julian Clary Photo: PA Images

TV personality Julian Clary is to receive an honorary degree from the University of East Anglia.

He'll be joined by authors Charlie Higson and Anne Enright, Adnam's chief executive Dr Andy Woods, Localgiving.com founder Marcelle Speller and humanitarian aid organisation Médecins Sans Frontières.

Julian Clary is a comedian and novelist who rose to fame with his alternative stand-up comedy in the 1980s. Known by many for his flamboyant dress and make-up, Julian has since gone on to perform sold-out stand-up tours, act on stage and film, as well as winning the 2012 series of Celebrity Big Brother.

His television career took off in the late 1980s with an appearance on ITV quiz show Trick or Treat. Following a Saturday Night Live appearance, Julian's own show Sticky Moments ran from 1990-91, leading to numerous appearances on shows from Its Only TV But I Like It and Strictly Come Dancing to Have I Got News For You, Who Do You Think You Are? and Piers Morgan's Life Stories.

Julian, who studied English and Drama at Goldsmiths, has had four books published - 'A Young Man's Passage', 'Murder Most Fab', 'Devil in Disguise' and 'Briefs Encountered'.

Julian said: "A doctor at last!". He receives an Honorary Doctorate of Civil Law.

UEA's Vice-Chancellor Edward Acton, who steps down from the post in September, will also be honoured during the week.

Charlie Higson
Charlie Higson Credit: PA Images

Charlie Higson is a successful author, actor, comedian, producer and writer. With fellow UEA student Paul Whitehouse, he co-created, co-wrote and co-starred in BBC Two's The Fast Show. Charlie graduated in 1980 after studying for a BA in English and American Literature with a minor in Film Studies. It was at UEA where he met his future bandmates who later became known as The Higsons.

Charlie has since gone on to have a varied career as an actor as well as writing prolifically - both in books and for television. He is the creator of the highly successful series of Young Bond novels, aimed at younger readers and concentrating on James Bond's school days. They have now sold over a million copies in the UK and been translated into 24 different languages. His current young adult horror series, The Enemy, is a similar hit on both sides of the Atlantic.

He was also patron of UEA's first Festival of Literature for Young People in 2013.

Charlie will receive an Honorary Doctorate of Letters.

"I didn't realise it back then, but my whole subsequent career came about through people I met at UEA and the subjects I studied. I thought I was just having a good time. It's a real honour for a former blue-haired punk and layabout to be given this Doctorate."**

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– Charlie Higson

UEA's Vice-Chancellor Edward Acton, who steps down from the post in September, will also be honoured during the week.**

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Each year we present honorary degrees to those who have made outstanding contributions in fields such as the arts, science, sport and civil society and once again we are delighted to recognise the impact these inspirational people have had by inviting them to graduate with our 2014 cohort of students."

– Brian Summers, UEA Registrar and Secretary