Whisky master blender hopes father was ‘looking down’ as he was made OBE

Richard Paterson follows in his father’s footsteps as a master blender.

28 June 2022

A master blender said he hoped his father was “looking down” and seeing him become an OBE for his services to the Scottish whisky industry.

Richard Paterson, known as “the Nose” in the whisky industry and who works for Whyte and Mackay Ltd, was one of about 70 people to be honoured by the Princess Royal at the Palace of Holyroodhouse on Tuesday as part of Royal Week.

Many people had been recognised for their services over the last two years but until now were not able to attend investiture ceremonies in person due to the pandemic.

The whisky expert, who follows in his father’s footsteps as a master blender, said it was “a wonderful achievement”, adding: “I wish my father, who was a master blender like me all those years ago, I wish he was perhaps looking down right now and be proud of what we have achieved together.”

When asked by the PA news agency what he had in mind to celebrate the occasion, he replied: “A dram will be very much part of that, with my family.

“My dram of choice will be Whyte & Mackay, Dalmore, Fettercairn, Tamnavulin or Jura, these are all part of my world.”

Investitures at the Palace of Holyrood House
Owen Miller at the investiture ceremony at the Palace of Holyrood House (Jane Barlow/PA)

T20 athlete Owen Miller was also among those to be honoured by Anne.

The Dunfermline-born sportsman has been recognised for his services to athletics after he won a Paralympic gold medal in the Tokyo Olympics held in 2021.

Speaking to PA reporters about receiving an MBE, he said: “It was good.

“I was quite nervous, but it was good when I got up there.

“I just held my posture and confidence.

“I have an amazing group who keep me going at training, keeps me where I want to be.

“I want to say thanks to my coach and my gran for helping me up and my whole family for helping me throughout the hard times and lockdown and Covid and all sorts.”

Investitures at the Palace of Holyrood House
Ross McEwan (Jane Barlow/PA)

Ross McEwan, former chief executive of Royal Bank of Scotland Group, was made a CBE for his services to the financial sector.

Speaking after the ceremony, he said: “When I was advised I was getting a CBE I said it was always a team effort and the team did an amazing job to turn the bank around.”

He said Alison Rose, the now chief executive, and the team are running “a really good business”, adding “it was great to have been part of that and to be here today and receive this award on behalf of a lot of people”.

Former chief nursing officer for the Scottish Government Fiona McQueen was honoured for her services to NHS.

Speaking after being made a CBE, she said: “It was a real privilege to meet her (Anne) and speak to her and see her interest in what happened in the pandemic.

“It was really helpful and touching to have that conversation with her, how difficult the pandemic had been and the role that nurses across the country had played, but not just nurses… all of the workforce that contributed to it.”

She said the day brought “a tinge of sadness as well, thinking and reflecting on what happened, and how we managed to get through the pandemic”.

Also in attendance was general practitioner Dr Adaeze Ifezulike who was honoured for services to health inequalities in black, Asian and minority ethnic communities in Scotland.

“It’s great to be recognised for the work one has done, it’s an encouragement to do more,” she said.

“It’s a great honour to receive this.”

Investitures at the Palace of Holyrood House
Dr Adaeze Ifezulike (Jane Barlow/PA)

Dr Isabelle Kerr, of Glasgow and Clyde Rape Crisis Centre and who has worked in violence against women and girls for the last 40 years, was made an MBE for her services to British nationals abroad and victims of sexual assault and gender-based violence.

Speaking about her conversation with the Princess Royal, she said: “She was really interested, she was asking about work I have done with the Foreign Office, particularly the work overseas training police officers and so on.”

On being honoured, she added: “I was surprised, really surprised, but it was really nice to have that work recognised and the value of it recognised, and that it had been noticed.”

Also among those to be recognised was James McGoldrick, a former United Nations Assistant secretary general, deputy special coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process and humanitarian coordinator, for his services to humanitarian relief overseas.

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