Ken Livingstone turned down CBE in New Years Honours list

Cricklewood politican was offered gong for services to the Olympics

Former Mayor of London and ex-Brent East MP Ken Livingstone turned down a CBE offered to him in the New Year Honours list.

The 67-year-old who lives in Ivy Road, Cricklewood, revealed he was offered the gong for services to the Olympics but rejected it as he believes politicians should not be given honours.

The Labour politician told the Times: “I am not really in favour of the honours system, but if you’re going to have one then it should be reserved for people who have done great voluntary works or sporting achievements. The system is discredited when politicians get involved.

“There are all these people who basically pay �20,000 or �30,000 to in political donations and they get an award. I think that’s just wrong.

“It’s always been a bit of a class establishment. I don’t mind if it’s people doing outstanding things, but giving it to politicians and business people just stinks.”

Mr Livingstone also tuned down the honour of deputy lieutenant in 1986.

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He added: “The deputy lieutenant is awarded by the Queen specifically and I was an active politician at the time talking to the IRA leadership.

“What do you expect a deputy lieutenant to do?!”