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Keeping Up Appearances star honoured

By Lucy Mapstone

Dame Patricia Routledge said the Prince of Wales shared his joy with her that she has finally been recognised for her work in the theatre as she was honoured at Buckingham Palace.

The 88-year-old Keeping Up Appearances actress was made a Dame Commander of the British Empire for her services to the theatre and charity and was honoured by Charles, who she said was "pleased" to see her receive the title.

Dame Patricia added: "I'm still in a state of surprise and thrilled that the Prince of Wales is here."

"He said, 'At last somebody's noticed'. He said how pleased he was and a little more."

Dame Patricia is known for her role as the hilariously snobbish Hyacinth Bucket in the BBC sitcom, but has also had a prolific career in the theatre.

Sir Richard Eyre (73), the newly knighted former artistic director of the National Theatre, said he was "flattered and surprised" when he discovered he was being made a member of the Companion of Honour for his services to drama.

Also given an award was leading cyclist Helen Scott, who was presented with an MBE by the Prince of Wales.

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