1. ITV Report

Baroness Grey-Thompson honoured by university

One of the UK’s most successful athletes is to receive an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Sunderland.

Eleven-time Paralympics Gold Medalist, Baroness Grey-Thompson, who is also the President of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations and sits in the House of Lords as an Independent Crossbench Peer, will receive an Honorary Doctorate of Law on December 1.

Baroness Grey-Thompson. Credit: The University of Sunderland

Acknowledged as one of the most gifted sportswomen of her generation, Teesside-based Tanni Grey-Thompson competed in five Paralympic Games and won the London Wheelchair Marathon six times between 1992 and 2002.

Following retirement from athletics she has played a prominent role in public life, and became Dame Tanni Grey-Thompson DBE in recognition of her services to sport in 2005.

In 2010 she was elevated to the House of Lords as a crossbench peer and takes an active part in debates, with particular focus on sport, disability, health, welfare, and youth development.

She also helps to coach other wheelchair athletes, along with her husband Ian, and develop better racing chairs, gloves and other equipment.

During next week’s Winter Academic Awards, The University of Sunderland will also hand an honorary doctorate to James Ramsbotham, who has been Chief Executive of the North East England Chamber of Commerce for more than a decade.

James Ramsbotham. Credit: North East England Chamber of Commerce

James Ramsbotham is also Chairman of the Darlington Building Society, Honorary Colonel for The Rifles in the North of England, Chair of Trustees for the Durham Light Infantry Museum, Trustee for The Foundation of Light (SAFC) and a Deputy Lieutenant for County Durham.

He will be receiving an Honorary Doctorate of Business Administration on December 2, to celebrate his outstanding career in business and commitment to supporting the region’s economy and businesses.

"We are delighted to be paying tribute to Baroness Grey-Thompson and James Ramsbotham at our Winter Academic Awards Ceremonies. Both have all made such a significant impact in their chosen careers and their own journeys to success will no doubt be an incredible inspiration to our graduates who are celebrating their own academic success.”

– Shirley Atkinson, Vice-Chancellor, University of Sunderland

Close to 600 University of Sunderland graduates will attend the Winter Academic Awards with over 1,200 of their guests across two days of ceremonies.

They will congregate at the Stadium of Light to celebrate their successes.