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David Morrissey awarded honorary degree from Liverpool Hope University

A headshot of actor David Morrissey set against Liverpool Hope University's Hilda Constance Allen building.

Actor David Morrissey has been awarded an honorary degree from Liverpool Hope University.

The Liverpool-born star received the award of Doctor of Humane Letters (honoris causa) at Hope’s winter graduation ceremony, which took place at Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral on Thursday 26 January.

Morrissey, who was born in the Kensington area of the city, was bestowed the honour in recognition of his distinguished acting career and his work with social justice charities.

Widely regarded as one of the finest and most versatile actors of his generation, Morrissey has starred in TV, film and stage productions over the course of his 40-year career.

The 58-year-old is perhaps best known for playing The Governor in the Emmy award-winning The Walking Dead, and for the role of DCS Ian St Clair in the critically acclaimed BBC drama crime drama, Sherwood.

A Royal Television Society award-winner for his portrayal of Gordon Brown in 2003’s The Deal, Morrissey has worked with the Royal Shakespeare Company on several occasions.

He has been a committed charity campaigner throughout his life as a UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador, a supporter of human rights charity, Reprieve, and as a patron of The Bike Project and The Felix Project.

Now based in London, Morrissey returned to Liverpool to collect his honorary degree when he took part in a Q&A with Hope students at the University’s Creative Campus for the creative and performing arts.

“I would like to thank Liverpool Hope University for awarding me this honorary degree," he said.

“As a proud son of Liverpool it is humbling to be recognised by one of the city’s great institutions and particularly one that does so much to champion the arts.

“Drama can change lives. I am proof of that, and so I am delighted to establish a connection with a University which has made such a commitment to performing arts, with an entire campus dedicated to the creative industries. 

“I was pleased to be able to celebrate with the students at their graduation. It is a special day in their lives and it was a special day for me, too.”

Interim Vice-Chancellor Dr Penny Haughan, added: “The University is privileged to honour David with this honorary degree and we are delighted he is able to celebrate with our students.

“Liverpool Hope prides itself on producing rounded graduates who are ready to make a positive contribution in all aspects of the modern world.

“David embodies this commitment as a superb actor who excels in his chosen field, but also as a patron and supporter of various charities, many of which aim to improve the lives of children.

“He is a shining example to all our students.”

Published on 31/01/2023