New members of the Order of Merit announced



The Queen has been pleased to appoint naturalist and broadcaster Sir David Attenborough, former politician and the first woman Speaker of the House of Commons, Baroness Boothroyd, and military historian Professor Sir Michael Howard to be members of the Order of Merit.


The Order of Merit, founded by 1902 by King Edward VII, is a special mark of honour conferred by the Sovereign on individuals of exceptional distinction in the arts, learning, sciences and other areas. Appointments to the Order are in the Sovereign's personal gift and ministerial advice is not required. There are 24 members of the Order.

The appointments announced today bring the number of members in the Order to 22. Vacancies in the Order were created by the deaths of Lord Porter of Luddenham, Sir George Edwards, Lord Jenkins of Hillhead and Professor Francis Crick.

Members of the Order of Merit in appointment order as at 4 April 2005

Honorary Members

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, O.M. - 1995

Substantive Members

His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, K.G., K.T., O.M., G.B.E., A.C., Q.S.O., F.R.S. - 1968

The Reverend Professor William Owen Chadwick, O.M., K.B.E., F.B.A. - 1983

Sir Andrew Fielding Huxley, O.M., F.R.S. - 1983

Doctor Frederick Sanger, O.M., C.H., C.B.E., F.R.S. - 1986

Dame Cicely Mary Strode Saunders, O.M., D.B.E., F.R.C.P. - 1989

The Right Honourable Margaret Hilda, Lady Thatcher, L.G., O.M., F.R.S. - 1990

Dame Joan Sutherland, O.M., A.C., D.B.E. - 1991

Sir Michael Francis Atiyah, O.M., F.R.S. - 1992

Lucian Freud, O.M., C.H. - 1993

Sir Aaron Klug, O.M., F.R.S. - 1995

Norman Robert, Lord Foster of Thames Bank, O.M., R.A. - 1997

Sir Denis Eric Rooke, O.M., C.B.E., F.R.S. - 1997

Sir James Whyte Black, O.M., F.R.S. - 2000

Sir Anthony Alfred Caro, O.M., C.B.E. - 2000

Professor Sir Roger Penrose, O.M., F.R.S. - 2000

Sir Thomas Stoppard, O.M., C.B.E. - 2000

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, K.G., K.T., G.C.B., O.M., A.K., Q.S.O., A.D.C. - 2002

Robert McCredie, Lord May of Oxford, O.M., A.C., P.R.S. - 2002

Nathaniel Charles Jacob, Lord Rothschild, O.M., G.B.E. - 2002