Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell becomes second woman to win world's oldest science prize

ITV News Correspondent Dan Rivers speaks to Dame Jocelyn about the prize, and the wait for it

Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell has been awarded the world’s oldest scientific prize for her work on the discovery of pulsars.

The scientist and astrophysicist becomes only the second woman after Dorothy Crowfoot Hodgkin to be awarded the Copley Medal.

Speaking to ITV News, Dame Jocelyn said that she is "delighted" and "amazed" at having received the award.

'To get their top award is fantastic'

She also said that it was the first major recognition that she had received from the Royal Society.

Other recipients of the Royal Society’s highest prize include Charles Darwin and Albert Einstein.

Dame Jocelyn is one of 26 medal and award winners announced on Tuesday by the society, recognising research and outstanding contributions in the fields of advancing quantum computing, revolutionising prenatal testing, and challenging racist pseudoscience.

She was famously passed up for a Nobel prize in 1974 after her discovery.

Queen Elizabeth II with Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell (right) during a visit to the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 2017. Credit: PA Media

When asked if she thought this was become of sexism, Dame Jocelyn said that it "may have been" but she also believes it was because she was a student, and not a faculty professor.

The Copley award includes a £25,000 gift which Dame Jocelyn will add to the Institute of Physics’ Bell Burnell Graduate Scholarship Fund, providing grants to graduate students from under-represented groups in physics.

Watch Dan Rivers' full report on Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell here: