Not long ago, a Sudanese activist received an award from the U.S. State Department for her work fighting for the rights of tea sellers. Now, one of our finest tea educators is being honored by England with the British Empire Medal.
In January, World Tea News was pleased to report the selection of Jane Pettigrew for the British Empire Medal (Civil Division) for service to tea production and history. Her selection was included on the 2016 New Year Honor List.
The time has come for the ceremonies and presentations. This week Ms. Pettigrew traveled to Buckingham Palace for a garden party. She wore a lovely white dress adorned with red flowers. It rained but Pettigrew reported on Twitter that it was still a “wonderful time.” The investiture ceremony will take place next week.
The BEM has a storied past dating to the First World War. The medal is awarded in two divisions, one for gallantry in combat and in service to the empire by those living outside the United Kingdom. It was discontinued for a period but in 2012 Prime Minister David Cameron announced that the BEM would once again be issued in the United Kingdom, although only in the civil division. The first of the new series of medals were awarded to 293 people in 2012, to coincide with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
The Wandsworth Guardian published an article about Pettigrew and her award.
Last year, Pettigrew received the Best Tea Health Advocate award and the Best Tea Personality award at the World Tea Awards. She is a finalist for the Best Tea Health Advocate award again this year.